I’m writing this from the Club Lounge on board P&O’s Spirit of Britain. It’s finally time to head for the Nürburgring, for this year’s 24-Hour race.
Ferdinand Magazine is following the Falken Tyres Porsche team, as it tries to improve on a more-down-than-up race last year. Falken driver Peter Dumbreck’s recent interview with The Sun newspaper put the situation into perspective:
“The good thing is that, in a very competitive group of cars, we are right up at the front with a tyre that has come on a long way in the course of a year. But you can’t just chug around 10 seconds off the pace. You have to push and that means you have to take these cars quickly.
“In a split second you have to make a decision about whether to overtake or where to overtake and not to lose time in doing it. And you are making that decision 30 times in one lap, because you will pass at least 30 cars a lap.”
Falken have a growing endurance racing profile. In the USA, Wolf Henzler and Bryan Sellers race a superb Porsche GT3 RSR (above), and have been fighting their way up the field. More teams are choosing to race on Falken tyres – the popular Haribo Porsche team at this year’s Nurburgring 24-Hour are the latest additions, and I’ve recently put another Porsche racing team in touch with Falken Europe’s head office.
What are the chances of a Falken victory at this year’s event? Well, they’ve got a car which has won in 2012 VLN, and four very capable drivers. Manthey had a run of luck with good reliability and competitor retirements last year, so maybe 2012 will be Falken’s turn. I certainly wouldn’t mind missing my return ferry to attend a victory party.
Follow Ferdinand Magazine on Twitter to keep up with the race as it happens. I’ll be doing my best to tweet the lot: should be plenty to talk about!