Bad luck continued to plague Indian racing driver Armaan Ebrahim and BMW Sports Trophy Team India at round five of the 2013 FIA GT World Series held at the Navarra circuit.
The weekend was slated to be a wet one as rains lashed the 3.9-km venue in northern Spain, but the team was positive about its chances given the pace it showed in the early sessions.
“We were decently quick in the wet, despite some tyre degradation issues, but the pace was there and we were banking on some good strategy for a decent result”, said Armaan.
But things didn’t go as planned during qualifying as Armaan teammate, Filip Sladecka wasn’t on the pace as expected. Having driven at Navarra before, he was expected to be set the pace in the team but it wasn’t to be.
This threw the team’s strategy awry but there was still hope of salvaging a good result despite a bad qualifying. Sladecka started the wet qualifying race and after 20-odd minutes, handed the car to Armaan. The Indian drove out of the pits on slick tyres as the rain was expected to abate and the team was poised to take advantage of the drying circuit.
“We took a call to go on slicks as rain was subsiding and we were hoping to gain an advantage later in the stint compared to cars which were on wet rubber”, confirmed Armaan.
But the Indian couldn’t get that far as he was forced off track on his out lap by another McLaren MP4-12C and the combination of slick tyres and a soaking wet run-off meant he was in the barriers before he knew it.
“I knew I had to be extra careful during the opening few laps, as the tyres, the track everything was cold and wet and there was hardly any grip. But once I got squeezed off, it was like hitting black ice and I was a passenger until the impact”, he rued.
The nature of the impact meant the car couldn’t be repaired in time for the main race, which meant the team couldn’t start the main championship race of the weekend.
“We had good pace, and expected a good result but once again we have no result to show for it. It is really disheartening”, concluded Armaan.
The season finale of the FIA GT Series is scheduled at the Baku Street circuit in Azerbaijan on 22-24 November, 2013.