Testing The Lucchini LMP2
Gabriele Tosi was at Misano yesterday, as development began
in earnest with the new Lucchini LMP2 car, following the shakedown
at Adria last month.
Peroni, Mirko Savoldi, and Filippo Francioni were all present, Peroni
the first out onto the track. He completed about ten laps, before
pitting with a slight misfire on the Judd XV engine, and a little
difficulty with the gearchange.
The Judd engineer quickly
solved a mapping problem with the XV, while the gearbox was examined
and nothing found seriously amiss. Peroni reported a tendency to
understeer. The engine gave good power and reliability, the car
reaching 243 kph on the longest straight at Misano.
All three drivers
later reported that the ‘seat’ in the car was uncomfortable,
Francioni unable to complete more than five laps at a time.
Peroni covered all the
ground in the morning, only to leave the wheel to Mirko Savoldi
for a few laps just before the break. As Savoldi left the pit, he
stalled the car twice – but there was a problem with the clutch,
which went down to the floor and didn’t return.
a little nervous but stall once is OK, twice and I’m getting
a little stupid or some kind of problem happened!!!”
The clutch was fixed
by 13.45, and with thunder rumbling around the track, Savoldi ventured
out again, but after five laps, and as he opened the throttle at
the start of the longest straight, “all the lights on the
dashboard came on, like a Christmas tree!”
Nothing major though:
apparently a slight problem with a fuel pump, and the engine had
switched to safe mode.
were made to the front suspension, to try to cure the understeer
and to make the car less nervous.
Savoldi continued to
make short runs, and late in the afternoon, Peroni got back in to
check out the progress. He completed a 12 lap run, the longest of
was the third driver to take his turn, soon returning to the pits
to report to Giorgio Lucchini (below) that the seat was very uncomfortable,
that the understeer was still present, but that the brakes were
went out again, but stopped before 18.00 as the rain, which had
been predicted all day, finally started to fall. The team had planned
a change of tyres and going for a “quick one” but the
weather said “not this time.”
A halt for dinner
on the way home with Filippo Francioni and his father was a highlight
of the day, the conclusion being that despite some niggling problems,
the car ran very well for its first serious test. The best lap set
during the day was by Mirko Savoldi, a 1:28.12.
The plan now
is to continue testing this month, with the car making its debut
at Spa in September. Then the team will head out to California,
for the final ALMS race of the year at Laguna Seca, followed by
Sebring next March, and then a focus on the 2005 LMES and Le Mans.