We did a good VLN-race at the Nürburgring on Saturday, but we were unlucky in the end when we had a race incident, and had to retire on the last lap when we were just 20 seconds behind the leading car.
Saturday’s race was Møller Bil Motorsport’s first race this fall, and it was good to be back behind the wheel. Although you try to be as prepared as possible, it will always take some time to get back into the rhytm.
I did only one lap on Friday, and then I was first out in the qualifying on Saturday. A misunderstanding meant that I got out on the track a bit too late, and both my laps were ruined with way too much traffic and yellows. My second lap was 08.48, and I was planning a third one, but aborted when something started to smell burnt inside the car. The car seemed ok, though, and my team mates continued. Kenneth did a 08.47, but also had a lot of traffic. At the time we were second in class, and decided not to go out again to set a better time. I’m sure we could have gone much faster, but it’s always a risk involved. In the end we ended third in class, three seconds behind the pole position.
I started the race in the very warm weather. The heat inside the car is one thing, but the main problem is that our turbo car is lacking power in warm weather. So we couldn’t expect any record braking lap times, but that’s the same for everybody with these types of cars.
My start was not very good, and I was fourth when crossing the starting line, but in to the second corner I was third again, and it soon was a gap down to the car in fourth. But after Hatzenbach on the first lap it was a double-yellow, and a speed limit of 60 kph. I slowed down, and just when I hit 60, the double yellow was replaced by a green flag, and the fourth place car didn’t need to slow down and passed me easily. I was almost down to fifth, and I saw the leading cars disappear.
On the next lap I overtook the third placed car, and started the hunt for second. On the second lap I also set the fastest lap of the race in our class with 08.48. After a few laps with a lot of traffic and yellows I was also able to pass young talent Chris Schmitz in his TT, and me and the leading 303-TT of Chris Tiger soon got a gap to the rest of the field. I was trying all I could to pass the 303 car, but I just couldn’t do it this day. This car has supposedly a stronger engine than we have, and it was quite much faster on the straights and out of the corners. I had some tough fights with this car last year also, but it seems even faster this year.
Into the first pit stop I was under a second behind the leading car, and after a good pit stop, Håkon took over. Håkon did a good stint, and just lost a few seconds to Daniela Schmid who was leading. Then Kenneth took over for the last stint, and he was catching the leader lap by lap. With one more lap to go he was 20 seconds behind the leader, but on the last lap he collided with a slower car, and we had to retire. Luckily Kenneth was ok, and accidents like this happen.
All in all we did quite a good race, but we didn’t have the margins on our side. But we learnt a lot, and know what we need to improve before the next race in two weeks. I also had a good weekend with friends and family supporting me, and I would like to thank the whole team that once again did a perfect job!