Keeping Up With Zytek’s Plans
The last (brief) news we reported here from Zytek Engineering concerned a test after the Istanbul 1000 Kms – on the Tuesday and Wednesday of last week (November 15-16).

dailysportscar.comOperations Director Trevor Foster (with Tom Chilton, right) brings us up to date on that test and other news.

First of all, chassis plans for 2006.

“We passed the date to commit to a new chassis for next year some time ago, so we’re working on a hybrid for 2006. The steering and suspension components for the hybrid will be used on the 2007 LMP1 car.”

It was reported elsewhere that Zytek had ‘pushed the button’ to build an all-new LMP1 for next season, but that is definitely not the case.

What about rumours of the sale of a car (the car) to an American team?

“Nobody made the commitment to buy the car for the ALMS.”

At least, post-Istanbul, the team can push ahead with 2006 plans knowing that they will definitely include Le Mans: runner-up spot in the LMES teams’ championship, behind the Pescarolo, ensured that there is definitely a 24 Hours entry in the bag for the new year.

So what about the post-Istanbul 1000 Kms test?

“We ran on the Tuesday and Wednesday: on Tuesday morning, the track was still wet after Monday’s rain. We were running Dunlop tyres, and that went very well. We used the 3.4 litre engine all day on Tuesday, then changed it for the four litre on Tuesday evening.

“We covered 600 kilometres with it on Wednesday, and it performed very well. The main task was to get plenty of miles on the development engine. We’ve got some work to do on the inlet and exhaust systems – but it was three seconds quicker than the 3.4.”

Hayanari Shimoda was on testing duties on Tuesday morning, before rushing off to his next A1GP assignment, in Malaysia.

“He had a mild headache at the end of the morning testing. We’d given him 36 hours rest between Friday’s running (at the 1000 Kms) and the warm-up on Sunday, but he’d only done seven timed laps before the race. We had the other drivers on standby for the last two hours of the race, because we weren’t sure how Hayanari would cope with it, but he came through it feeling fine.”

The really wet weather at the end of the race reduced the G forces, but the man who’d been in hospital in Australia only a few days beforehand coped tremendously well with being back in a race car – and in dreadful conditions too.

We’re still aiming to round up the Istanbul race on dsc: it was a tough one to really understand, especially among the prototypes, at the time. That might be next week now though.


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