Maximum satisfaction. “The result confirmed the correctness of the path we started a year ago. Even though we are actually still newbies in the world of endurance, everyone else has to reckon with us. Every experience in endurance racing counts. And when it’s topped off with a victory, it’s even better,” says a satisfied Jan Kalivoda, Buggyra’s head of communications.
The success in the race divided into two six-hour sections, in which a total of 50 crews of all classes were presented, is all the more valuable that the Buggyry trio started from the tail of the grid in the GT4 category on Saturday. The questionable track limits in the 17th turn were to blame, for exceeding which two members of the crew lost their best times. In addition, Aliyyah Kolocová was unlucky and caught the rain.
“We didn’t have the luck that belongs to motorsport. But let’s not throw a flint in the rye, because in endurance races the position at the start is not so important. Ahead of us is a twelve-hour race where a lot of things can happen,” said Adam Lacko prophetically after Friday’s qualifying.
From the first laps of Saturday’s opening six-hour race, the Buggyra drivers proved that they had form and gradually made their way forward. They were not hampered by the problems brought by the notoriously unstable Ardennes weather.
“I was a little afraid of the start, but it was quite uneventful. Then it started raining, wheelbarrows were literally falling down in Eau Rouge. On the slicks, I got away a bit and prayed that I wouldn’t hit the barriers. Fortunately, I only skated into the grass. Although we lost something there, the main thing was that we could continue and fight,” David Vršecký recounts.
The next five and a half hours turned into a battle that was crowned by Buggyry ZM Racing’s colors at the top of the GT4 category at the end of the first day. “I really enjoyed the two hours of driving on wet tires,” laughs Lacko, whose performance in the rain was praised by his former truck partner Vršecký as a fantastic ride.
On Sunday came the portion of the remaining six hours. Buggyra managed to combine all the essences necessary for success in endurance and she could celebrate a great triumph at the finish line. Thanks to their consistent performances, the trio of Kolocová, Lacko and Vršecký took the lead of the GT4 class in the 24h Series with a lead of 12 points.
“We drove consistently throughout the race. We avoided penalties for violating track limits. The team worked great and we had a great strategy. I am very happy that we won such a valuable trophy,” rejoices the only 18-year-old Kolocová.
“On Sunday we all drove a double stint, so I spent two hours behind the wheel. It was great. I tried to set the same fast times, which I did well. In the end, the tires were almost destroyed and I had a full tank, so it was difficult to drive the car. But I managed to keep the car on the track and finish in order to hand the car over to Adam,” he adds.
Vršecký values the continuous leadership in the GT4 class. “It’s a good start, but the season will still be long. We certainly don’t have our noses up and we don’t just think about winning. But after a winning weekend, it would be nice to repeat the success in the next race in Monza. It will be a new track for us and we will do everything to get as high as possible on it as well,” reminds the next race, which will be the 12-hour race in June at another famous circuit known from Formula 1.