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  • Emil Frey Racing places fifth in overall ranking of the GT World Challenge Europe 2020

    Emil Frey Racing places fifth in overall ranking of the GT World Challenge Europe 2020

    • Starting positions: P6 (#163) and P12 (#14) for the six-hour race
    • Race results: P8 (#163) and P11 (#14)
    • P5 in overall ranking of the GT World Challenge Europe 2020


    Le Castellet (France), November 15th 2020

    Free Practice / Pre-Qualifying
    Emil Frey Racing took advantage of the free practice on Saturday morning to find the right setup and to give newcomer Mikkel Mac the chance to familiarize himself with the car and the processes. To him, the race weekend came with two firsts: Being part of Team Emil Frey Racing and taking on a race in a Lamborghini. After having been handed over the #163 Lamborghini, Altoè struggled with oversteering and poor grip during pre-qualifying. The #163 crew then adjusted the setup accordingly in time for the qualifying. The two Lamborghinis finished their pre-qualifying on P13 (#163) and P16 (#14).

    Qualifying
    Altoè (#163) and Siedler (#14) were ready for the first qualifying. The new setup seemed to be a good fit for the Italian who raced to P8. Siedler, at the wheel of the #14 Lamborghini, delivered a strong performance as well and finished the first qualifying on P15. Mac clocked in solid lap times during the second qualifying and finished on P15. Grenier’s motivation was palpable, too. The Canadian was in 12th place with only 5 minutes to go and only 1.2 seconds to catch up on to the leader. Grenier finished his stint on P13. Costa (#163) and Feller (#14) took on the third and last qualifying. The Spaniard didn’t disappoint and drove his #163 masterfully to P2. Feller finished on P19 with the #14. The combined qualifying scores resulted in the starting positions for the last race of the season, which saw the #163 start from P6, and the #14 start from P12.

    Race
    40 cars were getting ready on the grid of Paul Ricard. Conditions on track were dry. Grenier (#14) and Altoè (#163) navigated a nerve-racking start, where several cars touched at the first chicane. Right in front of Altoè, an Audi started to spin, but thanks to Altoè’s fast reflex, he was able to dodge the Audi. It was a very strong start by Altoè, who then rose to P3. Grenier, at the wheel of #14, pulled off overtaking a Bentley and managed to place himself safely on P13 thanks to a strong lap time. Meanwhile, Altoè managed overtaking, leaving Ferrari behind, which secured him P2. Only 5 minutes later, the Italian took advantage of an error committed by another Ferrari right in front of him, claiming the lead. Then, in the 25th minute, a dramatic moment: Lexus’ Neubauer touched the #14 Lamborghini in the first turn, resulting in a spin. Grenier lost a lot of precious time but was able to continue the race without any damage to the car. After an hour of race time, it was time for both Lamborghinis to make their first pitstops. Grenier as well as Altoè took on double stints. The Canadian managed to place himself on P11 after a successful takeover. 2 hours passed and a full-course-yellow phase had to be introduced because of a Bentley that had come to a standstill. At the same time, Emil Frey Racing performed a pitstop and switched drivers to Mac and Siedler. At halftime, #163 was on P8, and #14 was on P11. Shortly after that, light rain set in. With almost 2 hours to go, Costa took over the #163 in 9th place. Siedler, with the #14, finished his stint on P10, before Feller took over. It was now Costas and Fellers time to shine and to successfully finish the race. With 1 hour and 10 minutes to go before the end of the race, Costa claimed P8 after successfully taking over a Porsche with the #54. Meanwhile, Feller solidly placed himself on P11. 45 minutes before the end of the race and with the sun already setting, the two crews went for a last pitstop. Unfortunately, the #14 Lamborghini got blocked by the #5 Mercedes, which made it impossible for Feller to make up positions. With only 6 minutes to go, Costa made up his mind to take over an Audi – a plan he pulled off 4 minutes later. The #163 crew finished on P8, while the #14 crew made it to P11. Emil Frey Racing finished the 2020 Season of the GT World Challenge Europe in fifth place in the overall ranking and claimed a solid third place in the sprint cup.

    Team statements

    Lorenz Frey-Hilti, Team Principal
    After a promising start by our #163 and a solid performance by our #14, I was of course hoping for different results. We delivered a strong performance at the start and Giacomo did an incredible job at the very top of the pack. However, due to tire wear, we lost grip and weren’t able to keep the pace throughout the race. We didn’t experience any technical errors or were given any penalties, which, of course, is a good thing. We’re concluding the season in fifth place in the overall ranking and in third place in the sprint series of the GT World Challenge Europe. I would like to thank the whole team for their hard work during this difficult year. The race weekends sometimes took place under very difficult circumstances, but we still managed to participate in all races and to finish the season.

    Jürg Flach, Technical Director
    It was our goal to finish third in the overall ranking. Unfortunately, our pace wasn’t good enough to reach that goal. Now it’s time to figure out the reasons why and to make the necessary improvements in time for season 2021. Aside from the many great moments, this shall be our motivation to improve. I’m proud of the team, their tireless efforts and of everything we’ve achieved this year.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #163

    Albert Costa Balboa (ESP)
    After eleven race weekends in a row, this was my last race for the year. This race wasn’t an easy one for me, I have to admit. We were leading the race, but unfortunately, couldn’t keep the lead and finished on P8. We were lacking a bit of speed and couldn’t fight for the victory. The Lamborghini Squadra Corse Team, Emil Frey Racing as well as my teammates did an amazing job. Of course, I wanted to do better but overall, I’m happy with our performance of the year. 2020 wasn’t easy for any of us. So, I’m really looking forward to leaving 2020 behind, and am looking forward to next year!

    Giacomo Altoè (ITA)
    It was the last race of the season with a new teammate. Unfortunately, Franck was racing in America. We tried to maximize our potential, and as always, we gave our very best. I’ve had a really good start: From P6, I went immediately to P3 and was almost flying with my pace. Then I rose to P2 and straight to P1, so we were leading, which was amazing. After the first pitstop, I started to struggle a lot with the car, especially with the tire degradation in the rear. And from then on, it was a really tough race. We need to look at what happened and what was missing at the end. Unfortunately, we couldn’t finish the job as we wanted, but nevertheless, things look very promising for the next season. Thanks to the team and my teammates.

    Mikkel Mac (DNK)
    It really, really was a great experience with the team of Emil Frey Racing. My teammates did an amazing job to help me find the right rhythm with the car and I think we did our best with only one day of testing and then going straight to qualifying, and then straight to the race. We had a lot of fights with other cars in the middle of the race, and I learned a lot about how the car behaved when I was behind someone. It was really interesting to experience the Lamborghini under these circumstances. Then it started to rain, which made things trickier. I did my best and the guys helped me out the whole weekend. I am very, very happy and thankful.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #14

    Norbert Siedler (AT)
    Of course, we imagined the race to be different. We aimed to finish in the Top 7. At the start, a Lexus touched our Lamborghini, which caused Mik to spin. In terms of speed, we weren’t where we were supposed to be. Something that started to become very clear halfway through the stint. All in all, one could say that we did well at the start, struggled in the middle of the race and began to pick up speed again toward the end of the race. The short season now sadly comes to an end. Now we’re looking forward and looking for ways to improve, so that we can fight right on top next season.

    Mikaël Grenier (CAN)
    It feels strange that the season is finished already. Today was a bit difficult, but I think we did the best we could. For sure, the start was crazy because a few drivers took a shortcut at the chicane and we lost some positions because of that – which isn’t fair. Then there was also the contact with the Lexus. Our pace at the beginning and at the end of the race was okay. Compared to the others, we struggled a lot in the middle. For sure, we have some homework to do for next year. Thank you to everyone. For many reasons it was a difficult year and we will come back stronger next season.

    Ricardo Feller (CH)
    This season felt both too short and too long. It was a challenging one, but I believe we were able to make a lot of progress and continuously kept improving the Lamborghini’s performance. I’m very grateful to have been part of the Emil Frey Racing Team in 2020 and hope that there’s going to be a next year. I’m not as happy with the last race but I think with P8 and P11, we managed to get the best we could. It’s not a perfect ending, but it’s also not a bad one. The potential to fight at the top is clearly there for both cars and I hope to prove that next year.

    EMIL FREY RACING FINISHES ON P16 WITH#14, AND DISCONTINUES RACE 1.5 HOURS BEFORE OFFICIAL FINISH WITH #163

    • Eventful comeback with 56 cars, two years after the last time in Spa
    • Technical problems force the #163 Lamborghini to end race early
    • The #14 Lamborghini finishes on P16


    Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium), October 25th 2020

    Free Practice / Pre-Qualifying
    For Emil Frey Racing, the action-packed weekend started with free practice on Thursday. The drivers’ feedback to the engineers was positive. The Lamborghinis were in great shape and, correspondingly, performances were satisfactory. During Pre-Qualifying, Siedler/Grenier/Feller with the #14 Lamborghini were able to sustain and strengthen their solid pace and finished on P8. Meanwhile, Costa/Altoè/Perera, behind the wheel of the #163 Lamborghini, struggled with light understeering, which is why they finished Pre-Quali on P31.

    Qualifying
    Due to the track still being wet, Emil Frey Racing placed their bets on wet tires. However, the setup didn’t work as bargained for. Costa drove to P44 with his #163 in Quali 1. Three minutes before finish, the #98 Porsche touched the #14 Lamborghini’s rear, which, luckily, didn’t cause any damage. A driver change followed with Grenier and Altoè taking over. Toward the end of his stint, the Canadian complained about understeering, which saw him place in 22nd position. Altoè, behind the #163 wheel, raced to P24. Feller (#14) and Perera (#163) took over for the last part. Feller struggled with missing rear control. The combined results had the #163 qualify for Super Pole, while the #14 Lamborghini missed the Top 20 by just one position, ending on P22.

    Super Pole
    It was Albert Costa, who, with the #163, raced two laps in the Super Pole. He impressed with a brilliant pace, which temporarily secured him P1. In the end, he safely placed himself on P9. The #163 crew received three warning points during the last race weekend, which saw them forced to fall back 5 positions on the grid, having them start the race from P14.

    Race
    56 cars got ready on the grid, right across the Formula 1 Boxes. At the beginning of the race, conditions were still dry. Only 10 minutes after the race kicked off, the first interruption already took place due to tire pieces on the circuit. From the get-go, during the first hour-long stint, Mikael Grenier was very happy with his Lamborghini and hauled in solid lap times. He finished his stint on P19 and handed over the car to Siedler. Perera ended his stint on P17 and handed the #163 over to Giacomo Altoè. Then it was time for Feller and Costa to take on a double-stint. A technical defect on the brakes forced the #14 crew to do a pitstop, which caused them to fall behind, to P40. Thankfully, Feller could gain back a few positions. Costa finished his stint and Perera took over, placing the Lamborghini on P9. The #163 Lamborghini with Franck Perera managed to race to P7 and to securely place in the Top 10, as one of two Lamborghinis. The clock had already been counting 7 hours, when Grenier was given a Drive-Through-Penalty due to an error during pitstop. The #163 crew wasn’t spared either during their pitstop: the fuel-timer didn’t want to work right away, which caused the crew to lose 7 valuables seconds.
    In the 14th hour, Ricardo Feller raced to P34, while his colleague Costa positioned himself on P12. Perera took over the #163 from Costa and secured a P7 position. Feller pulled off a couple of overtaking maneuvers and finished his stint on P32.
    The first signs of rain showed up just in time for the second half of the race, but didn’t last long. The tire choice played a crucial role. During the last hours of the race, the number of interruptions grew. With only 5 hours left to go, Perera with the #163 was on P9, while Grenier with the #14 was fighting on P24. Two hours before the end of the race, both of the crews decided to switch to slicks despite light rain. Though the decision seemed to be working to their advantage at the beginning, rain grew stronger and the decision turned into a challenge. With two hours left to go, Albert Costa, with the #163 was in 8th place, while Norbert Siedler with the #14 was in 22nd place. Franck Perera, after taking over the #163, struggled with a delayed start, which cost the team valuable seconds. 1.5 hours before finish came the bitter disappointment: a mechanical issue, caused by a contact with another car, forced the crew to quit the race early. Mikael Grenier, manage to race past the finish line with the #14 Lamborghini and finished the race on P16.

    Team statements

    Lorenz Frey-Hilti, Team Principal
    Extremely difficult conditions marked the 24h race. Of course, I’m disappointed over the result. The team and the drivers did an excellent job. We suffered a big setback early on with the #14 because of a technical issue. Despite this being a 24h race, it was almost impossible to make up for lost time. The race seemed to be going better for the #163 crew. We were able to fight in the Top 10 until 1.5 hours before race end. The #14 crew was able to secure P16, despite the big setback at the start. I want to thank the team for their hard work. We gained a lot of experience and are looking forward to hopefully be back in attack-mode soon.

    Jürg Flach, Technical Director
    We were well-prepared for this big event and had high goals. With the super pole we’ve achieved one of our goals. However, because of technical issues, we fell behind expectations. The team, once again, did a great job, but we still weren’t able to reap the fruits of our labour. Now it’s all about learning from this and to move forward.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #163

    Albert Costa Balboa (ESP)
    Of course I’m disappointed. To have to quit a race this close before the finish line is hard to accept – especially after having done such a good job during the race, even fighting in the Top 10. But that’s racing. We have to accept this and move forward. We grew stronger and more competitive from race weekend to race weekend. With a bit of luck, we could have maybe even made it to the Top 5. Thank you to the team that did a fantastic job. I’m looking forward to the last race in Paul Ricard.

    Giacomo Altoè (ITA)
    For me personally, it was one of the best experiences of the year with my Emil Frey Racing family. We fought really hard throughout the whole weekend. The speed was there, mistakes were minimized and all of that with the objective to make it to the Top 10. 1.5 hours before the race finish, we struggled with technical difficulties, which left us no choice but to end the race. It’s a pity. But I’m still proud of the team and my colleagues. We will return back stronger than ever!

    Franck Perera (FR)
    The conditions for this race weren’t easy at all. We fought very hard from start ‘til the last hour. Of course, disappointing moments are part of motorsport. Nevertheless, we should be proud of what we delivered and showed this weekend – without committing any major mistakes. The team did a great job. Thank you to the team, my colleagues and to Lamborghini Squadra Corse. We’re now moving forwarding and will try our very best to end the season in Paul Ricard well.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #14

    Norbert Siedler (AT)
    I think we all imagined this race to be different. Especially, because of the technical difficulties which caused for us to fall behind 5 full laps. But in the end, we’re happy with P16, considering that we had fallen back to P46. Thanks to the whole team that did a great job. I’m already looking forward to Paul Ricard.

    Mikaël Grenier (CAN)
    Well, what can I say – it was a long race! The performance we delivered was solid and good, but it wasn’t enough for a win. But if you take into consideration the fact that we had problems with the brakes twice, the team still did an amazing job. The pitstops were good, we didn’t have any crashes with other cars and we were able to finish the race, which is what counts the most. Next year we’ll be going for even better results.

    Ricardo Feller (CH)
    It was a very difficult race. Unfortunately, we had to change brake calipers twice early on in the race, which cost us a lot of time. It’s extremely difficult to make up for lost time. Nevertheless, a huge thank you to every single person in the team for the great work (as always) and thank you to Mik and Norbi for the flawless work.

    EMIL FREY RACING AWAITS THE SEASON HIGHLIGHT IN SPA-FRANCORCHAMPS

    • 56 GT3 cars from 11 different manufacturers are expected
    • First time for event to take place in autumn adds extra challenge
    • Optimistic because of learnings from past testing days in Spa


    Safenwil (Switzerland), October 19th 2020

    Emil Frey Racing has been preparing extensively for the upcoming 24h-race in Spa. The team was able to collect and analyze a handful of valuable insights and learnings during the official testing days in Spa late last September. The upcoming race is considered the most important race of the season, not just for Emil Frey Racing alone, but for the whole «GT World Challenge Europe» series. Fans all around the world will be watching the race live.
    Because of the recent results and general upward trajectory of the past race weekends, Emil Frey Racing is hopeful about achieving good results in Spa. No other race has as many points up for grabs as the 24h-race in Spa, making it the most crucial for the overall championship.
    The world-famous circuit in Spa-Francorchamps is merciless and calls for impeccable cars that can withstand any weather condition without losing stability. This year, the month of October, with its ever-changing weather conditions, will add an extra challenge. The circuit requires a lot of mechanical grip, especially for parts of track with a lot of turns.

    Overview 24h-race in Spa:

    Despite the fact that race will be taking place without fans at the circuit, it can be streamed live at home via Youtube-Livestream.

    Team statements

    Lorenz Frey-Hilti, Team Principal
    The circuit in Spa-Francorchamps is one of my absolute favorites. When I was still actively racing as a driver, I was given the opportunity to participate at the 24h-race several times myself. We were able to continuously improve on our performance during the past race weekends. Because of this and because of our known-how and the two Lamborghinis, I’m optimistic about achieving good results in Spa.

    Jürg Flach, Technical Director
    Since returning from Barcelona, we’ve been preparing non-stop for the highlight of the season: the 24h-race. The cars are getting a complete overhaul with new components to ensure absolute perfection – nothing will be left to chance. This, together with a great performance and a sound strategy, is key to winning. We were able to gather a lot of information and gain insights and learnings with our Jaguar and Lexus during the past few years and are therefore traveling to Spa with high expectations. It’s our goal to continue our successful streak and to finish the race on top.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #163

    Albert Costa Balboa (ESP)
    Motivation is at it’s highest for the biggest race of the year! This race means a lot to me, which is why I’m working hard. Spa-Francorchamps is my favorite circuit. I’m going to savor it. Now it’s all about finding the right setup. Of course, the crazy weather also means that we need a big portion of luck as well, but we still need to prepare for all conditions. We’ve been having a string of successful race weekends, which is why I want to continue our streak. I know I have the team, the car and the colleagues that are needed to achieve top results. I almost can’t wait to get to Spa.

    Giacomo Altoè (ITA)
    The 24h-race in Spa is the biggest race of the year! It’s going to be a long and intense week. That’s why we have to stay focused and can’t afford mistakes. The weather is going to be tricky. I’m hoping for good BOP (Balance of Performance). I’m sure that we’ll deliver, together with the whole team, as we’ve been improving constantly the past few race weekends. I’m really stoked about this race.

    Franck Perera (FR)
    I’m looking forward to be able to experience the mega event in Spa with the Emil Frey Racing team. All over the world it’s considered a privilege to take part in the 24h-race in Spa-Francorchamps. The team has evolved tremendously this season. It’s shown how competitive it is under the hardest set of circumstances. That’s what will drive me this weekend. We have all the ingredients that we need – team, driver and car – to achieve amazing things. Unfortunately, the event will be without fans – which isn’t unusual this year. Still, I’m looking forward to hit the pavement with the team.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #14

    Norbert Siedler (AT)
    I’m so looking forward to be starting in Spa soon! The last races have shown that we’re in excellent shape. We’re all top motivated and we’ll go the extra mile to compete at the very top. I’m very happy to be back and hope that the weather will behave at the end of October.

    Ricardo Feller (CH)
    After our successful race weekend in Barcelona, I’m now very much looking forward to Spa-Francorchamps. We’re well prepared and we’ll continue to improve the setup. This is especially important because of the long runs and the unpredictable weather.

    Mikaël Grenier (CAN)
    Naturally, I’m looking forward to the longest race of the year! Yes, it’s a big challenge, but I believe we’re ready. Our last 24h-race was two years ago. The weather will be a big question mark for all of us and play an important role. We have to prepare for everything and anything, but I’m confident – thanks to the whole squad and my colleagues.

    2 POLES – 3 PODIUMS: EMIL FREY RACING PUTS ITSELF FIRMLY IN THIRD PLACE AT THE SPRINT CUP OF THE GT WORLD CHALLENGE EUROPE

    • One-two finish at the first race: P1 for #163 und P2 for #14
    • 4 poles in the last five races
    • Third in the overall team ranking of the Sprint Cup 2020


    Barcelona (Spain), October 11th 2020

    The Safenwil Squad traveled in high spirits to Barcelona for the final leg of the Sprint Series of the GT World Challenge Europe 2020. The entire crew was in Barcelona – with the exception of Norbert Siedler, who had to sit this race out due to health reasons and was replaced by teammate Ricardo Feller.

    Test Session
    The race weekend was kicked off on Thursday, with the official test session. The session was dominated by numerous red flags and the corresponding interruptions. Emil Frey Racing started with a base setup that had been finalized during the last race weekend. The team decided on two different strategies for the two Lamborghinis to be able to adjust quickly to the ever-changing conditions on the track, and to be able to deal with minimal grip that was felt right from the start. Excellent lap times as well as finishing on P3 with the #14 and on P6 with the #163 were strong proof of the team’s competitiveness. After the test session, it was all about taking all the learnings, building on them and to keep optimizing the cars accordingly.

    Free Practice
    Emil Frey Racing and Lamborghini decided to participate in the Silver Cup because of the driver lineup for the #14, with Grenier and Feller taking turns at the wheel – truly a first in the history of Emil Frey Racing together with Lamborghini. The #163 took off on old tires while the crew with the #14 decided to go with new ones – those also took them all the way to P2 after the first free practice. The #163 Lamborghini secured P9. The team was then able to sustain their tight performance during the second free practice on Friday afternoon. The two Lamborghinis were defending their positions at the very top, with the two cars charging to the front with the #14 Lamborghini on P1 and the #163 Lamborghini right behind it, on P2.  They were able to defend and hold their positions for a very long time. However, competition didn’t want to waste their free practice and fought just as hard for a place at the top. In the end of the second practice, Emil Frey Racing secured P3 (#14) and P4 (#163) – a great indicator of what to expect in the qualifying.

    Pre-Qualifying / Qualifying 1 / Race 1
    Feller and Costa went first at the Pre-Qualifying. The two drivers felt visibly at ease in their respective Lamborghinis, which is why no major adjustments had to be made. Feller finished his stint on P4 and handed over the #14 to Grenier. Costa, at the wheel of #163, placed himself right behind Grenier, on P5. Shortly thereafter, with only about half an hour to go, rain started to pour. Meanwhile, Altoè was handed over #163 and struggled with missing grip. Still, the two crews emerged on P5 (#14) and P6 (#163).
    Only minutes before the start of the first qualifying, with a total of 21 drivers on the grid, it started to drizzle. The tire choice would now be crucial. Emil Frey Racing decided to go on Slicks for both Lamborghinis. Feller then sped off and placed himself right at the front within the first five minutes, with a Mercedes and a Bentley right behind him. Altoè as well produced a stellar pace and charged to P3. As the teams performed their pit stops, rain increased. Thankfully, Emil Frey Racing had managed to gain a solid lead that translated to a lap time of 1:45.572 and a pole position for #14, and another solid 1:45.975 on P3 for #163.

    The start of the first race didn’t deliver any spectacular moments. However, just 10 minutes in, a first interruption had to be called due to a Ferrari landing on the gravel. Once the safety car period was over, both teams went for a pit stop and a driver change to Costa/Grenier. The fast pit stop by the #163 crew even gained them a spot, placing them in P2.  Meanwhile, #14s excellent pit stop not only helped them defend their P1, but even strengthened the lead. With only 15 minutes to go, Costa edged his way forward and overtook his sister car with the #14. The Emil Frey Racing squad therefore bagged a double-victory: P1 for #163 and P2 for #14, and to top that off: a victory for the #14 Lamborghini in the Silver Cup.

    Qualifying 2 / Race 2
    Safety marshals declared the track as wet. Both Lamborghinis therefore started on wet tires for safety reasons. But that didn’t last long as the team switched to slicks after the first lap. The changing of tires was well worth it: Grenier (#14) and Costa (#163) charged their way to the Top 3 within the first 12 minutes. 5 minutes before finishing the race, another change of tires took place. Costa delivered a superb lap time and with it, the fourth pole position in a row for Emil Frey Racing. The #14 Lamborghini with Grenier at the wheel would be starting the second race from P11 on the grid. Conditions were dry at the beginning of the second race. Grenier went for it in the very first minute, trying to overtake SKY-Tempesta Racing’s Ferrari, resulting in Grenier touching the Ferrari’s rear. While he managed to place himself on P7 with that move, he was penalized with a Drive-Through-Penalty. With 7 rounds to go until pit stop, Costa was kept defending his lead with his solid pace. The #163 Lamborghini was then handed over to Altoè, who managed to stay in P1. Meanwhile, after the drive-through-penalty, their sister car with the #14 was handed over to Feller, who was able to gain two positions thanks to the fast pit stop. With only 10 minutes on the clock, Italian Altoè, at the wheel of #163, even impressed with the fastest lap on the circuit. Unsurprisingly, he then raced to the finish in first place, which was unfortunately penalized by the race authority with a 35-second penalty due to an error during driver change procedure – he fell back to P17. The #14 Lamborghini finished the race on P8 and even clinched third place in the silver class.

    Qualifying 3 / Race 3
    Once again, it was Costa and Grenier who were going to start with their respective Lamborghinis, and once again, they were able to keep the brilliant pace. The #163 Lamborghini gained a sizeable lead over the rest of the pack – a position Costa was able to successfully defend. Meanwhile, Canadian Grenier raced to P7 during halftime, with room for improvement in the third sector. 1 minute and 30 seconds before the end of the race, traffic was building, which wasn’t helping Costa at all. The Spaniard finished the qualy on P4 with his #163 Lamborghini, while Grenier with the #14 finished on P6. The third and last sprint race of the season started spectacularly: a crash involving several cars led to the race being interrupted only seconds into the race. It took a full 10 minutes before the race could continue. In the meantime, Ricardo Feller took over the #14 from Mikael Grenier, keeping a brilliant pace. The Swiss driver even recorded the fastest lap time with 24 minutes left on the clock. His colleague Altoè, meanwhile, battled his way forward and placed himself on P4. With only 15 minutes to go, Feller had one goal in mind: to pass the Audi in front of him. But easier said than done. The timer was mercilessly counting down, with only 8 minutes on the clock, and Feller still on P4. Feller’s fighting spirit paid off: The Swiss driver charged forward and pulled off a spectacular overtaking maneuver, securing him P3, and with it, Emil Frey Racing’s second podium in Barcelona. The crew with the #163 emerged as fifth. The Safenwil squad therefore placed itself firmly in third place in the overall team ranking of the Sprint Cup of the GT World Challenge Europe.

    Team statements

    Lorenz Frey-Hilti, Team Principal
    The team showed a lot of fighting spirit this weekend. I’m immensely proud of the double-victory in the first race; the two honors in the Silver Cup; the pole positions; and finally, of placing third in the overall ranking of the Sprint Cup in the GT World Challenge Europe. The denied victory in the second race and with it, the setback in the race for the overall Sprint Cup title is of course extremely hard for us. Still, it’s paramount to stay clear-headed for the last two race weekends. We definitely had a shot at a title-bid for the sprint cup. Now we’re shifting focus to the 24h of Spa.

    Jürg Flach, Technical Director
    Once again, we were able to deliver a very strong performance from the get-go. A double-pole-position, followed by a double-victory in the first race, as well as the denied victory in the second race are impressive proof of that. In the end, we managed to place ourselves firmly in third place in the overall sprint cup, and we gained really valuable learnings and lessons. Now it’s time to continue the upward trend and to prepare ourselves for the 24h of Spa with all that we’ve got.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #163

    Albert Costa Balboa (ESP)
    I’m super happy. The most important and crucial thing for me after this weekend, is that we were really strong. We almost had the title for the overall sprint cup in the bag, had we not gotten a penalty in the second race. Still, I am super proud of every single person in the team and of my partner Giacomo. With them, everything is possible. All in all: I’m in good spirits. It’s better to be strong and to lose than to be weak and to not even have a fighting chance. We fought hard until the very end, and that’s what counts.

    Giacomo Altoè (ITA)
    It really was a great weekend. I really appreciate all the hard work from the whole team and, of course, from Albert. They really did an amazing job. We won two races in a row – three even, if you count the one in Zandvoort. That’s a great achievement and it shows how hard the team’s been working and how much we’ve improved. I’m thrilled and so proud of the team and am already looking forward to Spa-Francorchamps.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #14

    Ricardo Feller (CH)
    It really was an excellent weekend. We showed a lot of potential. The pole position was a great achievement and the result of a strong performance. We could have won the first race, so I’m quite happy. We struggled a bit in the second race because we started a little bit further back and I got stuck behind a Mercedes. I was able to finish in P8 despite the drive through penalty. The last race was super fun as I engaged in a lot of duels with other drivers. The car was in great condition. Now I’m just looking forward to Spa.

    Mikaël Grenier (CAN)
    It was a great weekend. I think we were able to show that we were able to continuously improve the Lamborghini since the start of the season. The team is really doing an excellent job. We bagged two podium positions in three races and Silver Cup honors! I’m super stoked and would like to congratulate the whole team. Now it’s time to focus on Spa.

    ON TO THE LAST SPRINT WEEKEND OF THE SEASON AT THE CIRCUIT DE BARCELONA-CATALUNYA

    • Last and crucial sprint race of the season
    • EFR currently in third place in the sprint ranking and in fifth place in the overall ranking
    • Weekend schedule to consist of three one-hour races


    Safenwil (Swtizerland), October 06th 2020

    Return to familiar ground
    In February of this year, the team from Safenwil completed their first tests on the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, where they gathered valuable learnings which they will use to build a solid base for the coming race weekend. Emil Frey Racing has fond memories of the track. In 2019, the team celebrated a double victory and is therefore optimistic about the race weekend to come, which also happens to be the last sprint race of the GT WORLD CHALLENGE EUROPE 2020. As such, it will decide who will be the winner of this year’s sprint series.

    The following program will be implemented on October 10-11, 2020 in Barcelona:

    16 turns and 4.655 km of track shape the track in Montmeló, which is located only 30 minutes by car from Barcelona’s city center. The long turns, which lend the circuit its special character, will be especially demanding for the tires. The circuit is also a popular testing ground for Formula 1- and motorcylce teams; also owing to the mild temperatures in the winter as well as at the beginning of the year.

    Once again, this weekend’s race can be followed live, via Youtube-Livestream.

    Team statements

    Lorenz Frey-Hilti, Team Principal
    We left Zandvoort with mixed emotions because we weren’t able to translate our pole positions into wins. Nevertheless, we were able to make a great leap forward and are now in third place in the sprint ranking.  Now it’s time to head on to Barcelona and to take on the last tricky sprint race weekend of the season. We will be facing three one-hour sprint races, which will give us the opportunity to gain more points for the championship.

    Jürg Flach, Technical Director
    Barcelona is a familiar track. After our strong performance in Zandvoort, it’s now our goal to use the last round of sprint races of the season to ensure the positive trend keeps moving up. Being in third place in the sprint ranking, we’ll be aiming for a perfect weekend without penalties and errors in order to stay in the running for a title. The circuit in Catalunya had been given a new surface with fresh asphalt in time for the 2018 season and has become a lot faster. The fast turns as well as the slower parts of the track require good aerodynamics and mechanical grip. These seem to be our strengths. I believe in the skills of our team and I’m looking forward to the upcoming challenge.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #163

    Albert Costa Balboa (ESP)
    Racing in my hometown is always an extra motivation for me. From a total of three races, I will do two qualifyings. It will be our last sprint race of the season and I’m very motivated, especially after the win in Zandvoort. Of course, I’m going to be extremely focused again. Unfortunately, the event will be held without a public, but I will still give my best, as always, and hopefully be able to bring home another trophy!

    Giacomo Altoè (ITA)
    I’m really looking forward to the last race weekend of this year’s sprint championship. It will be a three-race-weekend, so busy times ahead! For Albert, it’s a race in his hometown and so of course, we hope to finish strong. We will fight to show everyone that the whole team did a great job to improve the car, the setup as well as the pitstop. We’ll try to do everything to maximize our result.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #14

    Norbert Siedler (AUT)
    I’m looking forward to the last sprint weekend! We fared really well last time in Barcelona and I’m sure that Emil Frey Racing will once again prepare a highly competitive car that will enable us to fight for a place on the podium.

    Mikaël Grenier (CAN)
    I like the track a lot in Barcelona, therefore I’m looking forward to be driving it. We were fast last year in the GT Open and did a few testing days at the beginning of this year in Barcelona. That’s why I have a good feeling and of course we’re trying to fight for a win this time!

    Successful testing days in Spa-Francorchamps

    • First time for Emil Frey Racing to be in Spa with Lamborghini and Pirelli
    • Changing weather conditions allow for broad range of setups
    • 18 hours of extensive day- as well and night sessions

     

    Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium), October 02nd 2020

    Emil Frey Racing has left Zandvoort (NL), where last weekend’s race took place, to travel to Spa-Francorchamps and do official testing from the 29th to the 30th of October 2020. The crew traveled with a limited number of members due to current travel restrictions. The tight schedule and long working hours meant that the team was going to face two fully-packed testing days. To say that testing would come with serious mental and physical strains for the whole team, is an understatement.

    The official testing schedule below:

    On Tuesday, the first out of two official test days, the two Lamborghinis already logged in an impressive number of kilometres. The #14 Lamborghini recorded 700 kilometres, while the #163 Lamborghini logged 849 kilometres. Emil Frey Racing’s objective for the test days was to get to know the circuit Spa-Francorchamps and to test the Pirelli tires alongside the Lamborghinis on the track. The team was working towards finding the perfect car balance in dry as well as wet weather conditions, and to optimize accordingly. To set a solid base, Emil Frey Racing also worked on its qualy-lap performance. However, the long-run performances were just as important, as it was of utmost importance to find a tire-friendly setup for the longrun. The night session offered the perfect opportunity for the drivers to get used to darker light conditions, while the engineers took the chance to analyse the tires and their behavior. A later-than-usual place in the calendar for the race also brings a whole new set of challenges. Especially the unpredictable weather and lower temperatures will require for the team to be extra agile during the race. Because temperatures will be dropping even lower until the end of October, it’s all the more important to make the right amount of tire pressure the main focus.

    Team statements

    Lorenz Frey-Hilti, Team Principal
    The two test days in Spa were very valuable. The 24-hour race usually takes place during the summer months. The race having been postponed to the end of October means that there will be new challenges that we’ll have to tackle together as a team. Nevertheless, thanks to all the insights and learnings, I’m looking forward to one of the toughest endurance races of the world.

    Jürg Flach, Technical Director
    We were able to stick to our plan during the official test days in Spa. The very first test day with a total of 11 hours of active racing, of which 4 were at night, were especially gruelling. The drivers were able to get used to the dark and the track characteristics. We’re well-prepared for the changing weather conditions, which are to be expected in late October.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #163

    Albert Costa Balboa (ESP)
    That was a good test for us. The weather was unpredictable as it kept changing from rainy to dry. But that’s also why it was perfect: We were able to try several things on the Lamborghinis and are therefore well-prepared for the big race. I can’t wait!

    Giacomo Altoè (ITA)
    We went straight to Spa-Francorchamps right after our weekend in Zandvoort, to take part at the two-day official testing. This helped us find a good base for the setup, which we will use starting from the free practice during the 24-hour race weekend. We were able to test in dry as well as rainy weather conditions and are really excited about the race weekend. Of course, a lot of work still needs to be done, but the 24-hour race is a highlight and the biggest race of the year. That’s why now it’s game time! Time to chase the best result possible.

    Franck Perera (FR)
    The testing days are over, and I am happy to be racing again with Emil Frey Racing. It’s been a long time since Nürburgring and it will be yet another long break until the race weekend in Spa-Francorchamps starts. The test days weren’t easy, especially because of the weather. But that’s no news in 2020! The race weekend itself won’t be easy either, which is exactly why it’s so thrilling. The team is working constantly on optimizing the Lamborghini, and they’re doing an amazing job. I’m confident that we have everything we need to deliver a great performance on the track. I’m looking forward to return to Spa with the whole team.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #14

    Norbert Siedler (AUT)
    It was a very productive two days of testing. We were able to test a lot of different scenarios – in dry as well as in wet conditions. Our engineers now have the next 3 weeks to analyse and evaluate a big set of data. I’m confident that they will do the right adjustments to the setup to get the car ready for the 24-hour race. Many thanks to the whole team!

    Mikaël Grenier (CAN)
    I’m happy with the two test days. We were able to try out different setups in rainy as well as dry weather, which was very valuable. Of course, there’s still room for improvement before we’re ready to take on the 24-hour race, but I’m still very satisfied with our output during the test days.

    Ricardo Feller (CH)
    The weather kept changing a lot during the past two days, which was actually perfect because it helped us collect loads of data, which we’ll evaluate and apply to get ready for the big race in three weeks. Our engineers did an outstanding job!

    26 BITTERSWEET POINTS FOR EMIL FREY RACING IN ZANDVOORT

    • Double Pole Position for Grenier/Siedler with Lamborghini #14
    • P4 for Duo Costa/Altoè in the first race
    • #163 takes home win after second race

    Zandvoort (Netherlands), September 26th 2020

    Free Practice / Pre-Qualifying / Qualifying – Friday
    20 from a total of 22 cars took part in the free practice in Zandvoort, with Emil Frey Racing being the only Lamborghini Team on the grid. Mikael Grenier with #14 finished his stint at second place, after which the Lamborghini was handed over to his colleague Norbert Siedler, who managed to keep the position, and therefore finished in second place. For #163, it was Albert Costa who went first, after which his colleague Altoè took over. He finished solidly on P7.
    It started to rain heavily right at the beginning of the pre-qualifying, just when Altoè (#163) and Siedler (#14) were getting ready to take off. Only 13 minutes into the pre-qualifying, the action had to be interrupted due to a crash caused by an Audi. Altoè raced to P6 and handed over the car to Costa. Grenier, meanwhile, took over from Siedler and positioned himself in P1, only 30 minutes before the end of the race, thanks to having nailed the fastest lap time in the third section. Shortly thereafter, the qualy in rainy Zandvoort was interrupted a second time. Nevertheless, Grenier managed to finish solidly on P4 with #14. #163 with Costa behind the wheel finished the pre-qualifying on P11.
    Grenier for #14 and Altoè for #163 were getting ready on the track that was still wet from the rain, to take on the first qualifying. Altoè fought hard and was able to constantly improve his lap time with each round. He finished the first qualifying solidly on P10 for #163. Grenier, meanwhile, showed a brilliant performance with #14, and delivered the fastest lap time with only 8 minutes to go – despite the fact that the Canadian ended his session in the gravel. This little circumstance as well as a Mercedes that started skidding led to an interruption and caused for lap times to be cancelled. Still, even Greniers second-best lap time was fast enough to grant him the pole position for the first race.
    Second qualifying. Time for Siedler (#14) and Costa (#163) to show what they’re made of. Costa delivered a strong start right away and managed to stay on top. Norbert Siedler as well gave it his all in the last three minutes and achieved unbeatable lap times in both sectors. Siedler therefore secured the second pole position of the weekend for Crew #14. Costa was missing a mere 0,036 seconds to reach P1, and landed on P2. Amazing results for Emil Frey Racing, who would be starting at the very front.

    Race 1 – Saturday
    The asphalt was still wet, but Grenier (#14) and Altoè (#163) were ready to take on the first of two races. Because of the unpredictable weather, the team decided on a two-thronged tire strategy: Grenier would start with slicks, while Altoè would start with rain tires. Shortly after the start of the race, rain started to pour. It took much longer than expected for the asphalt to dry, which led #14 with the slicks to have a hard time building grip, causing them, unfortunately, to fall far behind. Siedler got behind the wheel of #14 and finished the race on a frustrating P19.
    Altoè was a tad luckier with #163 and rain tires and raced to P2 after 30 minutes, but had to deal with a tire puncture shortly thereafter. After a quick pitstop, his colleague Costa took over and secured a solid P4 – despite the flat tire.

    Race 2 – Saturday
    Albert Costa started the second race from a strong P2, but lost a position in the first corner to an Audi, falling back to third place. There were 6 laps still to race and Siedler felt strong oversteering, but kept on fighting. Costa used the mistake of the Audi in front of him to his advantage and placed himself in P2. Because of the better pace he was even able to place himself at the top. The Lamborghini with #14 followed and positioned himself on P2. Crew #163 continued to deliver a stellar performance in the second stint, with #163 even racing to victory. What’s more, Crew #163 won the pitstop challenge for the fastest pitstop. Alas, while #14 finished the race in second place, they were given a 30-second penalty. Reason for this was a decision by the stewarts that the pitstop was not done according to safety standards. Emil Frey Racing is concluding the race weekend in Zandvoort with mixed feelings.

    Team statements

    Lorenz Frey-Hilti, Team Principal
    This race weekend shows once again that the sport of racing can be cruel. Despite having secured a promising advantage in the qualifyings, we were greatly disappointed after having been given the penalty for #14. The twin victory in Zandvoort was not ours to take home.
    I am very proud of the victory of #163 in the second race. This is a great motivation for the team. Three sprint races are next in Barcelona. We will prepare as much as we can.

    Jürg Flach, Technical Director
    We expected to deliver a strong performance this weekend, and we were right. We were highly competitive from the start – in dry as well as in wet conditions. The outstanding qualifying results were proof of that. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to reap the fruits of our labour with #14, and weren’t able to celebrate a double victory together with #163. But still, with our first victory in the GT WORLD CHALLENGE EUROPE and Lamborghini, we achieved positive results and gained important points for the championship. So we’re optimistic, and we look forward to our next stop in Barcelona.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #163

    Albert Costa Balboa (ESP)
    Luck wasn’t on our side in Magny-Cours and I made a mistake, so I was really looking forward to this weekend to give my best for the team and Giacomo. We were extremely focused. The team had a really great car – in wet as well as in dry conditions. In the first race, we had to deal with a tire explosion, but we still managed to finish the race in fourth place. So I’m really happy. Then, in the second race, I lost one position in the first corner. But I got lucky and was able to overtake. Also, Norbert let me pass which made my life much easier. I got my rhythm back and I’m really looking forward to Barcelona.

    Giacomo Altoè (ITA)
    I’m so so happy about the results of Race 2. We won! I’m so proud of the whole team and my teammate Albert. And also: The pit crew won the pitstop challenge. They’ve been amazing! Finally, we got rid of the bad luck from qualy where we had issues with the tires and the bad luck in Race 1, where we were in P1 but had to deal with a tire explosion. We’re back, and we can start from here.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #14

    Norbert Siedler (AUT)
    It was definitely a great weekend with having bagged two pole positions. Although luck wasn’t on our side in the first race because of the tires that were chosen, we still finished with a great overall result for the whole team. In terms of speed, we’re where we want to be, now we just need luck to be on our side as well! Congratulations to Giacomo and Albert. They did a great job! We’re now looking forward to the next race. But first, we will do tests in Spa, which will be crucial to find the right setup, but after that we’re headed straight to Barcelona, where we’re going to be fighting right at the top.

    Mikaël Grenier (CAN)
    It was a good weekend. I’m very proud of the team. Two pole positions is something to be proud of. First pole position of the year – times two! The car showed a strong performance in the rain. This morning, we had a bit of bad luck with the tire strategy, but that’s just how it is. Sometimes it’s just like playing in the casino. We focused on the second race, where we struggled a bit with the car, but in the long run, we managed to get good results for the team, so I’m happy. Of course, I’m disappointed about the 30-second penalty. In my mind, we finished second. We were able to show everyone how fast we are. I think the penalty was a bit harsh, but rules are rules. Now we move forward and we look ahead.

    TWO SPRINT RACES AWAIT EMIL FREY RACING IN ZANDVOORT

    • Marks the third out of four sprint race weekends of the season
    • Qualifying highly crucial
    • Valuable learnings gathered at test weekend last July


    Safenwil (Switzerland), September 22nd 2020

    Points up for grabs at two one-hour sprint races
    Emil Frey Racing currently ranks 6th in the overall team ranking at the GT WORLD CHALLENGE EUROPE. Of course, the goal remains the same: to score as many points as possible at every race weekend to further climb up the ranks. The Emil Frey Racing team already had the chance to test at Zandvoort last July, from which they gained valuable insights and learnings that they will take with them to the coming race weekend.  The team from Safenwil is expecting a tight schedule from September 25-26, 2020.

    Once again, the race will be taking place without a live audience. However, fans can watch the race and root for their teams live via Youtube-Livestream. A couple of support series will also be held at the Circuit Zandvoort this weekend. The Porsche Carrera Cup Benelux and the Formula Renault Eurocup to name just two. The Circuit in Zandvoort made its name as a Formula 1 track and comprises a total of 14 fast and sweeping corners and 4.307km of length. Located in the dunes north of Zandvoort, the track comes with a lot of hills as well as tricky crests and bumps. The surface constantly gets covered in sand because of the wind, which presents a big challenge.

    Team statements

    Lorenz Frey-Hilti, Team Principal
    I’ve never been to the Circuit of Zandvoort myself, but I’ve read and heard a lot about it. This track definitely has its challenges. Also, the track is located near the coast, which is why we’ve got to constantly keep an eye on the asphalt as the sand and the dirt play a big role when it comes to driving performance. We’re very focused on taking home crucial points, and we’re looking forward.

    Jürg Flach, Technical Director
    We already did some testing in Zandvoort last July. The test helped us to set up the cars according to track-specific intricacies and to gain valuable learnings for the race. This year, the track underwent some changes in Sector 1 and 3, with parts having gotten asphalted and corners having been slightly modified. After the solid performance in Magny-Cours, it’s now all about keeping our momentum to achieve the best possible outcomes at the qualifiyings and the sprint races to score as many points as possible in the series.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #163

    Albert Costa Balboa (ESP)
    After all the bad luck and my error in Magny-Cours, it’s time to move on to the next chapter. I’m looking forward to the two sprint races in Zandvoort. We had a great setup in Magny-Cours, but weren’t able to show what we’ve got. Now it’s time to give everything in Zandvoort. It’s looking good and I really like that track. As always, I will give my very best for the whole team and my team partner Giacomo.

    Giacomo Altoè (ITA)
    Crew #163 had a rough weekend in Magny-Cours. It’s now time to come back stronger and to show our potential. I really like the track in Zandvoort, but I know it’s definitely a tricky one. Takeovers will be the big challenge, which is why the qualifying will be crucial.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #14

    Norbert Siedler (AUT)
    After a great race weekend in France, I’m now looking forward to a new challenge in Zandvoort. It’s one of my favorite circuits! The qualifying will be of utmost importance. As we’ve already got the chance to test in Zandvoort, we come prepared with experience and a lot of knowledge which is why I think we’re going to do great!

    Mikaël Grenier (CAN)
    I’m looking forward to the sprint weekend in Zandvoort. It’s a very interesting track that requires the perfect setup. It’s a challenge for us drivers as well. We come well-prepared because of the tests we did there. We delivered a strong performance in Magny-Cours two weekends ago, but we know we need to continue to work hard and to once again lay our focus on a good qualy, as takeovers are very difficult to execute in Zandvoort.

    A ROLLERCOASTER OF EMOTIONS FOR EMIL FREY RACING IN MAGNY-COURS

    • First finish on the podium for Grenier and Siedler (#14) after R1
    • Collision with Mercedes leads to early retirement for #163 in R1
    • Strong grid – less than two tenths between P10 and P1 in the qualifying


    Magny-Cours (France), September 13th 2020

    Private Test Session – Thursday
    To the drivers of Emil Frey Racing, the two-hour private test session taking place on Thurdsay from 20:15 to 22:15 presented the perfect opportunity to prepare for the first race on Saturday night. It was obvious from the get-go that drivers Costa (#163) and Siedler (#14) had been familiar with the circuit from past races. For their colleages Altoè (#163) and Grenier (#14), however, Magny-Cours was a first. The dark lighting conditions weren’t ideal for a first «getting to know you», but they nevertheless offered a good base for the upcoming weekend. An hour after the private testing sessions started, it had to be interrupted due to a Bentley that caught fire. The only two Lamborghinis participating ended their late-night test session on P9 with #14 and P4 with #163.

    Free Practice / Pre-Qualifying – Friday
    Mikael Grenier started out strong with #14. Unfortunately, only two minutes into the free practice, the car of a competitor skidded off-road and landed on the gravel, which led to the training being halted momentarily. Norbert Siedler was handed over the Lamborghini and immediately felt at ease, with his lap times being incredibly strong. Giacomo Altoè as well gained more confidence with each lap before handing the Lamborghini over to Costa, who then finished at P6. Meanwhile, #14 raced to P12. At the Pre-Qualifying later that night, it was Altoè and Grenier who went first for their respective teams. The setup of both cars were continuously optimized according to the demands of the circuit and #14 finished on P9 while #163 finished strong as well on P8.

    Qualifying & Race – Saturday
    Although Italian Giacomo Altoè was able to race to P3 right at the beginning of the qualifying, he lost valuable time only two minutes before the finish line because of slightly driving off the track, giving him an end position of P11 after qualy. Meanwhile, Mikael Grenier with #14 solidified his advantage with each lap and finished strong on P2. Luck continued to be elusive for Altoè at the race later that night. Only a few minutes after the start of the first race, a Mercedes and his Lamborghini #163 touched. The resulting damage led to an early end of the race, which left the whole #163 crew disappointed. Unfazed, Mikael Grenier was able to continuously improve his pace before turning the car over to Norbert Siedler at a solid second place. Siedler managed to defend P2 until the very end, helping the whole crew #14 achieve their first podium, at 2nd place.

    Qualifying & Race – Sunday
    Albert Costa and Norbert Siedler were pumped and ready to take on the second qualifying of the race weekend. The qualifying was kicked off with a very strong start by Costa, with him reaching P1 after only 10 minutes. Siedler as well proved to be strong competition and raced to P3. One minute before the finish, Costa had to reduce speed in the midst of his fastest lap due to yellow flag. He concluded the qualifying on P5 with his #163. Siedler with #14 lost two valuable tenths during his fastest lap due to being blocked by a competitor, giving him a starting position of P10 for the second race. Fun fact: First place and 10th place were only two tenths apart.
    A powerful amount of adrenalin gathered at the circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours. At 13:45 sharp, 23 cars kicked into gear and immediately caused a turbulent start. 35 minutes into the race, a rather unfortunate pitstop by crew #163 caused for valuable time to be lost. Reason for this time loss was a crash with vehicle #66, which led to the crew experiencing difficulties in putting on the tire during pitstop. In the meantime, Norbert Siedler fought his way all the way up to P5 in his #14, before it was time for a pitstop and time to change drivers, to Mikael Grenier.
    25 minutes before the end of the race, #163 was given a stop-and-go penalty because of the aforementioned crash and found itself at P12. Meanwhile, Canadian Mikael Grenier was clocking in increasingly fast lap times. With only 10 minutes left to go, the positions for Emil Frey Racing were P12 for #163 and P8 for #14. In the last 2 heated minutes, Grenier once again gave it his very best. He gained one position and reached P7. For the second race day, Emil Frey Racing finished on P7 with #14 and P12 with #163.

    Team statements

    Lorenz Frey-Hilti, Team Principal
    How tight the series is, was once again spectacularly proven at this race weekend. Every hundredth of a second matters, especially in qualifying. I have mixed feelings. On the one hand, I am extremely elated over reaching 2nd with #14 at the night race. Grenier and Siedler did a great job. It’s so rewarding to be on the podium with Lamborghini. On the other hand, the crash between the Mercedes and our #163 was very unfortunate. Alas, we have to accept it. As fort he second race, I’m happy with the performance of both Lamborghinis. Of course, the stop-and-go penalty was rather regrettable because we had great chances of placing well. Still, I’m looking back at a very fruitful race weekend and am already looking forward to the next one in Zandvoort.

    Jürg Flach, Technical Director
    We were quite optimistic about Magny-Cours. We improved steadily in the sessions and delivered a solid performance in the qualifying. It was our goal to get on the podium – something we reached with #14 thanks to great results in the qualy. It’s a pity that we fought hard but still weren’t able to meet expectations with #163, owing to a small crash in the first race; a penalty; and a pitstop which took too long after a collision in the second race.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #163

    Albert Costa Balboa (ESP)
    After a strong qualifying I was confident and really motivated to start the race. But after one lap I couldn’t find the confidence in the car like I was able to in qualy. I lost one position after the safety car and afterwords, while fighthing against a competitor, I lost another position when we touched each other. I thought he was going straight in the chicane but he didn’t. That’s when we touched each other and he went straight to the wall. After the crash my car was not performing the same way anymore. I want to apologize to the whole team as well as Lamborghini Squadra Corse for my mistake. Only two weeks left until the next race. We need to stay focused as we have a strong team as well as a strong car.

    Giacomo Altoè (ITA)
    This was a tough weekend for us. We were given great opportunities but weren’t able to make the most out of them. In the first race we just got very unlucky with the crash – and we didn’t even finish one lap! And then the stop-and-go penalty in the second race! We now have to take a step back and look at all the things that went wrong this weekend in order to return stronger to the next race in Zandvoort and to maximize our potential.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #14

    Norbert Siedler (AUT)
    Of course, I am super happy for the entire team who did an amazing job throughout the whole weekend. The Lamborghini’s setup was great from the start, so that we only had to do minor adjustments. In the end, we were rewarded with our first podium of the season, which is great for the whole team. Thank you once again. In today’s race we made it to P7. We’re happy about this, but I think we could have fought further up front in the qualifying. Nevertheless, we gained points and our focus now is in on the next race in Zandvoort.

    Mikaël Grenier (CAN)
    I am very happy about the weekend. We started very strong from Thursday on and improved in every session. The engineers are doing a great job and step by step we are getting stronger. Norbert was also mega this weekend. It’s a shame that he got blocked in his qualy as he was on a pole position lap and the race would have been different. In any case, a front row start and our first podium yesterday is still very positive.

    A FIRST FOR EMIL FREY RACING AT MAGNY-COURS IN FRANCE

    • Second sprint race of the season
    • A one hour long night race as the weekend highlight
    • EFR confirms participating at the official test sessions


    Safenwil (Switzerland), September 08th 2020

    Nonstop: from Nürburgring (DE) to Magny-Cours (FR)
    The tight race schedule for the months of September and October barely leaves any room to take a breather. As soon as the six hour long endurance race at Nürburgring comes to a close, it’s already time for the next sprint race for the team from Safenwil. The upcoming sprint weekend will consist of two races, each lasting one hour. What makes the coming weekend extra exciting is the fact that the race on Saturday will start at 22:15 sharp, thus making it a night race. Aside from the GT WORLD CHALLENGE EUROPE, numerous other support series will be part of the race happenings. For example, the French GT4 as well as the Formula 4 will be present at the race weekend.

    Magny-Cours lies at the heart of France and is home to the former Formula 1 track «Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours». The circuit has a very smooth and flat surface and is over 4.412 kilometers long. It comes with nine right- and eight left turns and is considered one of the most modern and safest race circuits in the world. The corner Cheateu d’eau is located at the highest point of the track and owes its name to a water tower only two hundert meters away, that, up to this day, supplies the towns of Magny-Cours and Saint-Parize-le-Châtel with water.

    24 cars will get into the fight at the race weekend from the 10th to the 13th of September 2020. Emil Frey Racing is ready to fight and defend their place in the Top 10. The following schedule is in place for the race weekend in Magny-Cours (FR) (local CET-time)

    Team statements

    Lorenz Frey-Hilti, Team Principal
    I’m extra excited about this particular race weekend. It’s going to be very interesting because the location is a first for both the GT WORLD CHALLENGE EUROPE as well as for us as a team. The race track has its tricky particularities. Furthermore, it’s going to be the first time for both our Lamborghinis to race at night. I am looking forward to this challenge and am hoping to bring home valuable points.

    Jürg Flach, Technical Director
    Magny-Cours is a well-known race track, but we’ve never actually tested or raced that track during our GT3 times. So it’s our objective to use the 2-hour long test session on Thurdsay evening to adjust our basline setup according to the demands of the track, and to then use our free practice to further optimize the cars for the qualis as well as the race.  The circuit is very even and comes with a lot of chicanes that require a lot of downforce and solid balance. We are ready to take on this new challenge and we will give it our best shot to score more championship points.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #163

    Albert Costa Balboa (ESP)
    For me personally, Magny-Cours is one of the greatest circuits that I’ve ever raced. I really, really like this track. It was in Magny-Cours where I learned to take fast turns as a Formula driver. I remember racing there in 2009 and 2010. In 2009, I even won both races at the Renault 2.0 Eurocup, where I really fought hard to land on the podium. In the sport of GT, it will be my first time to be there. As already mentioned, it’s a beautiful track that always allowed me to show my strengths. That’s why I almost can’t wait to return. I hope that the car will work according to plan, so that we can fight for a place on top.

    Giacomo Altoè (ITA)
    Magny-Cours is a completely new circuit for me. But it’s going to be a first not just for me, but for the whole race series as well. The track is not going to be easy without any previous experience, but I’m still looking forward to successfully applying our learnings from our first sprint race in Misano to this race.

    Driver statements Lamborghini Huracán GT3 EVO #14

    Norbert Siedler (AUT)
    For sure, Magny-Cours is going to be really interesting for all teams. I doubt that a lot of teams were able to test this track! We have to be agile during the free practice to be able to make adjustments to the setup quickly. I am confident that we will pull that off. The circuit really suits me with its fast and slow corners. It’s going to boil down to finding a good compromise with regards to the setup. We are ready for the second sprint weekend!

    Mikaël Grenier (CAN)
    Despite it being my first time to race this circuit, I am already considering this track as one of my favorites. Also, I’m really stoked about the night race. That is going to be a lot of fun for the fans at home and really interesting for us as a challenge. We are aiming for a successful race weekend and are taking our learnings from the sprint race in Misano with us, which is why I am confident about getting good results.

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