The Risi Competizione team cited a lack of downforce as a major hindrance as the Ferrari squad struggled for pace in qualifying for the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship event at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park.
Pierre Kaffer was given the task of driving the #62 machine in the 15 minute session, but he was only able to set the ninth fastest time in the class pulling himself from the tail of the GT Le Mans (GTLM) class in the closing lap. However, his time of 1:16.390 was still over a second down on the target time set by Kuno Wittmer in the #93 Dodge Viper.
Kaffer reflected; “The last lot of changes we made before qualifying were positive, the car is well balanced and we improved on what we had before, but we’re still behind the others. We’ll study the data overnight and hopefully tomorrow it will start to rain and then everything’s possible. The boys did a good job, and the car is nice to drive, but we’re just not quick enough.”
“It’s been a pretty tough few days,” admitted team manager Dave Sims, “and there appears to be some discrepancy in the GTLM Balance of Performance which is definitely working against us. If it rains tomorrow, it will definitely shake things up and that might work well for us providing we stay out of trouble.”
Kaffer is sharing the car with Giancarlo Fisichella, and, though it is the Italian’s first race at the Bowmanville, Ontario track, between them the duo have a wealth of experience at the wheel of GTE Ferrari 458 in a wide variety of conditions. That could play to their advantage if the predicted rain goes some way as to level out the perceived disadvantage endured by the team compared to their class rivals.
The Mobil 1 Sportscar Grand Prix presented by Hawk Performance is scheduled to start at 2pm Eastern time (7pm UK).