Nick Tandy hoping for something “a little bit different to a standard race”

The #1 Porsche will start from third on the grid for tomorrow’s six hours of Sil­ver­stone. How­ev­er Nick Tandy has not­ed that tyre wear will be the lim­it­ing fac­tor in the race. We caught up with him to get his thoughts ahead of his first home race in LMP1 with Porsche.

Porsche were not as close as they would have hoped to have been to pole posi­tion after qual­i­fy­ing, with the gap over a sec­ond between pole and their fastest 919 Hybrid. How­ev­er Porsche have been focus­ing on long runs in prac­tice. Nick Tandy explained, “You’ve basi­cal­ly only got one set of tyres per prac­tice ses­sion.” This meant to get the most out of their tyre allo­ca­tion, Porsche had been focus­ing on long runs and not fly­ing laps.

In Mon­za they (Toy­ota), did a lot of qual­i­fy­ing sim­u­la­tion work.” The Brit con­tin­ued, “…on the course of this week’s prac­tice its the first time we’ve real­ly gone out and tried to do a fast fly­ing lap… we didn’t expect to be in front but we didn’t expect to be so far behind.”, Said Tandy.

Tandy went on to explain how this morning’s weath­er impact­ed on Porsche’s qual­i­fy­ing prepa­ra­tion. He told us, “We were look­ing to do a qual­i­fy­ing sim­u­la­tion this morn­ing but it was a damp track”. Despite not being as quick in qual­i­fy­ing as was hoped, Tandy added, “We looked a lot hap­pi­er on pace against Toy­ota in yes­ter­day afternoon’s run.”, where Porsche focused on long runs with Andre Lot­ter­er and Earl Bam­ber in their cars.

With new rules point­ing towards teams hav­ing to dou­ble stint tyres, Tandy told us that tyres are the key to a good race. “Tyre wear is high. Espe­cial­ly the front left tyre takes a lot of abuse around here.” Tandy con­tin­ued, “That will be the lim­it­ing fac­tor. Look­ing after the front tyres in a dou­ble stint is huge around here.”

The oth­er ques­tion loom­ing over Sil­ver­stone this week­end is the weath­er. How­ev­er Porsche think we are set for a dry race. Tandy said, “It looks pret­ty dry accord­ing to us.” How­ev­er the 2015 Le Mans win­ner added, “You’ve only got to get a bit of wind up tomor­row morn­ing and any­thing can blow in from any­where.”

A clean race in the dry and we might see the race string out a bit so we’re hop­ing for some­thing a lit­tle bit dif­fer­ent to a stan­dard race whether it be rain or some­thing with the strat­e­gy. Maybe some cars can’t dou­ble stint tyres, so lets see.”, said Tandy.

In terms of wet run­ning in the new car, Tandy told us that there had not been much test­ing. “This year alone we’ve just done Mon­za night prac­tice ses­sion so not much at all. You have to set the cars up for the dry and deal with it when the rain comes and put wet tyres on. Find out how Tandy and his team mates get on in the race tomor­row from mid­day.

Images: WEC-Mag­a­zin — James Clarke, Ton Kerdijk and Wal­ter Schruff
Inter­view: James Clarke.