Team owner/driver Tracy W. Krohn, Nic Jonsson and Andrea Bertolini started 10th in the highly competitive GTLM class on Saturday in a race that was burdened by 14 full course cautions. The Krohn team was fortunate to lead a smooth and uneventful race and did their part of staying out of trouble to bring the car home with no issues. Their only complaint was a persistent brake system issue they suffered since Thursday.
When the race went green at 11:13 a.m. EDT Krohn was the starting driver. He completed several stints throughout the day, clocking his career best lap time at the historic Road Atlanta track. The team rotated through two sets of driver stints for Jonsson and Bertolini. Krohn drove the final stint, his third, across the finish line to a spectacular fireworks show at 9:13 p.m. EDT.
Saturday’s Petit Le Mans race concludes an eight-year run with the popular green-and-blue livied Krohn Racing Ferrari (F458 and F430) as they move into a new Ligier LMP2 car for the 2015 season.
TRACY W. KROHN, Krohn Racing Team Owner/Driver, No. 57 Krohn Racing Ferrari F458 GTLM:
“It was actually a pretty good day for us. We had a few problems with the car but drove through them. It would have been better if we had a little more brake power, but we fought it. Really, the race was good for me. I believe I turned some pretty good lap times and had fun out there.”
I don’t think this is the last we’ll see of the Ferrari. Maybe, but I rather doubt it. It’s a really fun car to drive. I’ve enjoyed driving it, but now we’re going to move on to the Ligier LMP2 for next year so we’ll see what a step up in class brings us.”
NIC JONSSON, Driver, No. 57 Krohn Racing Ferrari F458 GTLM:
“It’s always fun to come to Road Atlanta and race at what was our home track for a very long time. Petit Le Mans is one of the biggest races of the year and to just to be able to compete here is an honor. This year we competed in the GTLM class as the only privateer and to finish in the top ten and have a clean run is good for the guys. They prepped a really good car for us even though we had a few minor issues during the race and battled a brake issue all day. Both Tracy and Andrea did a great job out there. It’s been a good multi-year run with the Ferrari and we appreciate all their support. Now, for the next few years, we’re going into LMP2 and really looking forward to it.”
ANDREA BERTOLINI, Driver, No. 57 Krohn Racing Ferrari F458 GTLM:
“It was a shame regarding the brakes because, like I said before, the team did an amazing job. We had a really good car in terms of balance and the tires were really good, but it was like a nightmare out there on the braking. Everyone did an excellent job in trying to understand what we needed to do to fix the problem and the team did really great all weekend. It was truly a joy for me to be with Tracy, Nic and all the guys with Krohn Racing again.”
HAYDEN BURVILL, Krohn Racing Engineer:
“Unfortunately we had a good set-up on the car, but had appalling brakes. So, it’s hard to capitalize on a good car if it’s not a complete car. We thought we cured the issue after practice and obviously had not. The drivers did good job of getting some decent lap times on a car with marginal brakes. Like I always say before these races, you have to stay out of trouble. While we were out of trouble we stayed in contention and within reach of the leaders, but as soon as we had troubles with the car we obviously put laps between us and the leaders.”
GARY HOLLAND, Krohn Racing Team Manager:
“Ultimately, the finish is a little disappointing. We had a really good car through qualifying and the race and the strategy would have played out quite well had we not struggled with a brake problem that was difficult for the drivers to manage. Everyone did a very good job, despite the circumstances they were given. We’re looking forward to a little break and getting a jump on the new season. We were hoping to compete better here at Petit Le Mans since it is such a prestigious event and it’s one that the drivers really love. We absolutely thank Andrea Bertolini for his hard work and pace over the weekend and hope we work with him in the future.”
The next IMSA TUDOR United SportsCar Championship race for Krohn Racing will be the 2015 running of the 24 Hours at Daytona, January 24-25, 2015. The team is set to compete in a new LMP2 race car, the Ligier JS P2, built by Onroak Automotive of Le Mans, France, and fitted with a Judd engine for the 2015 race season. The Houston, Texas-based team plans an extensive test session over the winter.