A WEEKEND TO FORGET AS OD RACING SHIFT FOCUS TO SEPANG
A tough weekend in the heat of Buriram ended in dismay for Team OD Racing Best Leader as Fairuz Fauzy nursed the McLaren GT650S into the pits 15 minutes from the end of the 4-hour Round 3 of the Asian Le Mans Series in Buriram, to find a piece of artificial grass put paid to their hopes, already dampened by a stop-go penalty.
It was a promising start off the blocks as Fairuz brought the car from 11th on the grid after qualifying yesterday, to 7th before handing it over to Australian ALMS debutant Liam Talbot, who put in a consistent stint before handing it to New Zealander Jono Lester.
"During the second driver change, we were charged with an infringement and had to serve a 10s stop-go penalty, which didn't help either. We dropped to 10th and were maintaining that position with 15 minutes to go, when I suddenly felt there were no brakes. I pitted and we found some debris in the front left brake air duct which was a piece of artificial grass from the side of the track," said Fairuz.
"That effectively put us out of contention. We were classified, as we had completed 75 % of the race distance, but it was not what we wanted. That's racing and now we look towards Sepang for the final round. We will have to deal with the heat again, but here in Buriram the heat was quite immense as well. We have learned something here and we hope to put everything together and deliver a strong performance in the final round."
Talbot, in his first time racing a McLaren, was positive about the effort the team had put in throughout the weekend, though the end result did not make it a dream debut for the 34-year old.
"It was a great shame today. We showed good pace and used excellent strategy to move forward in the race.
The car setup was great and very consistent throughout a stint. The track, for the Mclaren, is very tough on brakes.
We experienced extreme heat inside the car, the worst any of us has ever felt.
Unfortunately debris was stuck in the brake duct and we retired," said Talbot.
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