Lavaggi LS1 On Track
Giovanni Lavaggi could most often be seen at Jarama yesterday (Friday, September 22) standing near his new LS1 LMP1 car and just looking at it.

Was he considering some current problem?

“Of course I am always thinking about how we can improve the car, the set-up, everything. But mainly I am really just coming to terms with the reality of what I have done. It is just a real pleasure to have the car here and running. It really is a dream for me for the longest time.”

Team Manager Achim Stroth was another man beaming with pride: “Giovanni has achieved something remarkable. He has done this almost alone without the 30 or more engineers and designers that Porsche or Audi are able to throw at such a project. It must be 30 years or more since a driver brought a top line car of his own design to the track.”

It’s on the track of course that the effort really counts and after a dozen establishing laps in the first session yesterday, to check the basics, the team got down to some more serious set-up work in the afternoon session.

Xavier Pompidou was soon down to some very respectable times, carving a large chunk of time out of the mark set in the morning session.

‘That’s the easy part, finding the first four or five seconds by pushing a little. The really tough work starts now, to get closer to the cars that have a lot of data and a lot of testing and race miles.”

Lavaggi reported more good news after the session: “The car is predictable and is responding as we predicted to changes. From the driver’s point of view it is a nice car to drive too. Remember though that this is not just a new chassis, the PME tuned engine is the first time this unit has ever been used in a sports prototype. So far it is going well.”

With the second session seeing the #3 car challenging the top ten on the timesheets, four seconds away from the ultimate pace, today’s (Saturday’s) sessions will start to show whether more pace can be squeezed from the big LMP1 car this early in its development cycle.

We wish him well.

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