1st Round Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup – Istanbul (TUR) Podium finish in Turkey
Driving for VELTINS Lechner Racing, Norbert Siedler with a third rank fetched the first Podium finish at the season opener. The reigning Champion René Rast covers fifth position in the first race of the 2011 Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup. With the two good results, the team of the Austrian Walter Lechner ranks second in the team standings of the championship.
"All in all I am really satisfied", Walter Lechner, team manager of the last years champions team draws up a balance of the season opener of the fastest makes cup in Europe. "Our new entry Norbert Siedler had a splendid first race for the team and René Rast, after a not optimal qualifying, had some remarkable fights in the race and finally managed to finish in the TOP-5."
In the qualifying, the two Lechner-Porsche covered positions three and six in the field of the 21 sports cars. Until five minutes before the end of the session, the Austrian Norbert Siedler even held the best time. "I had my first pole position in the Supercup so to speak right before my eyes, but unfortunately in the last minutes two opponents still managed to beat my time by 18/100 of a second", Norbert Siedler comments on the close competition in the field of the 450 hp strong Porsche 911 GT3 Cup. "I don't know how to make the right use of the new tyres yet. We have to make progress with that matter", says René Rast, the reigning champion and fourfold race winner of last years season, about his gap of 0.5 second on the best time.
Coming from third position in the starting grid, Norbert Siedler delivered a strong performance during the 14 laps of the race. After a good start he defended his third rank throughout the complete distance, only at halftime he felt some pressure, but remained on his position. "I run into strong over-steer and so I had no chance to keep the pressure up on the two leading drivers", says Siedler. "However, third rank in the first race of the season is a result I can easily live with."
One of the pursuers of Norbert Siedler was also his team mate René Rast, who with a perfect start could improve forward to fourth position. In a thrilling battle with the Brit Sean Edwards and the Netherlander Jeroen Bleekemolen, the reigning champion of the Supercup only in the last laps struggled and had to let draw Edwards past. "I made a small mistake at the end of the start and finish straight and so Edwards managed to make a move on me", explains Rast. The Champion finally saw the chequered flag fifth.
"The performances of the team and our drivers was quite good, but we will have to cover the topic with the new tyres still a little more", team manager Walter Lecher declares one of the future tasks of his crew. "The change at the tyres from Michelin, which comes to use in the 2011 Supercup, as well as the rubber of the Formula 1 behaves completely different than it still did in last years season. That leads to a different driving behaviour of the Cup-Porsche. In such a competitive series like the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup this is a decisive point on which we now will have an eye on in additional tests."
The next round of the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup takes place in Barcelona (ESP) from May, 20th to 22nd. Last year, Norbert Siedler fetched his first Supercup victory there.