Challenges faced and resolved at Watkins Glen

In today’s 15-minute GTLM qualifying session for tomorrow’s Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen at the iconic New York track of Watkins Glen, Tommy Milner in the No.4 Corvette Racing C7.R qualified 7th with a fastest lap of 1:44.783.  Pole position went to the No.55 BMW ahead of the No.3 Corvette of Jan Magnussen.

Milner’s team mate, Olly, commented:  “We’ve had a really big issue over the last few events with a handling imbalance in our car, probably since before Laguna Seca.  We haven’t been able to get rid of it and it was an issue even at Le Mans.  The decision was taken today before the last practice to change some structural things on the chassis such as cradles, and we think we’ve made a big step forward.  The reports back from Tommy were very positive because in this morning’s session when I was driving the car was very tricky and hard to drive.  We were at least a second off our sister car and we seemed to be struggling.

“We made the changes and it was looking good but then there were the red flag interruptions, which caused the same problems for everybody, but then the fire bottle exploded in the car! It was like someone had taken a can opener and just taken the whole top off it.  It was extraordinary and no one at the team had ever seen it before…we were all sitting there on the timing stand wondering what else could possibly go wrong.  Maybe that’s the turning point for us!

“Tommy did a brilliant job in qualifying.  We went back to basics with the car’s set up and, with all these other structural changes that had been made to the chassis.  We’re now starting a way down and are going to have to work away to find a decent balance.  Tommy had quite a lot of understeer in that qualifying session so did a fantastic job to get us into p7, just three tenths from the No.3 car.  We feel like we’re in the fight at least and we’re going to work away with the car in warm up and we’ll see where we are in the race.  It’s certainly a lot more positive than it was this morning.  It’s been a difficult few events for us but hopefully we’ve now turned the corner.”

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