Stefano Coletti completed his maiden European Le Mans Series race with the SMP Racing squad at the Four Hours of Silverstone, and along with team-mates Julian Leal and Andreas Wirth secured the runners-up spot.
The Monegasque driver admitted the team were lucky to get the podium at Silverstone, but was happy with the outcome as he and his fellow rookie team-mates adjusted to live in ELMS endurance racing.
“It was nice, first race, as a rookie, with three rookies in the car so a lot of things to get used to,” said Coletti to The Checkered Flag. “But it’s a very fun race, overtaking every lap and always being alert to see and calculate the margins with the GT’s and the LMP3’s to catch them at the right point and overtake them without losing too much time.
“We are very happy, we got a bit lucky today with the second place because I think the speed in itself was to finish probably third or fourth, but in the end we got lucky and we are happy to finish on the podium.”
Coletti feels the SMP Racing BR01-Nissan LMP2 machine is like a single-seater to drive, which for a single-seater convert is quite important, but it is the mind frame of becoming a team sharing a car that was a big change for the former GP2 Series and IndyCar racer.
“It’s a completely new thing, you have to think about its not your car, its our car,” revealed Coletti. “Its not any more I have to do this, it’s we have to do this, and you have to push your team-mate to be in the top as well and at their maximum.
“It’s an interesting series, a lot of things to get used to but I’m having a lot of fun and I think my team-mates and I have a lot to learn and once the car gets going I think it’s going to be good.
“I love the car, the car actually feels like a single seater to drive, it doesn’t feel like a GT or anything else, it just feels like a single seater, its agile, its quick, and I can tell you it’s much nicer to have a roof over your head when it’s that cold.”