The most recent chapter in Piquet's numerous racing profession - Motor Informed

The most recent chapter in Piquet’s numerous racing profession

However the numerous profession of Nelson Piquet Jr, who completed second to GP2 rival Lewis Hamilton within the 2008 German Grand Prix, has entered a brand new chapter because the Brazilian returns to GT racing within the Lamborghini Tremendous Trofeo North America collection with ANSA Motorsports.

The inaugural Method E champion in 2014-15 has targeted totally on racing in his home Inventory Automobile collection (which regardless of the identify has little in frequent with NASCAR and as a substitute extra intently resembles touring automobiles) since splitting with Jaguar’s FE squad in the course of the 2018-19 season, and this yr arrange his personal two-car workforce, with Sergio Jiminez as his team-mate.

It was 2018-19 Jaguar I-Tempo eTrophy champion Jiminez, who raced for ANSA final yr, that made the reference to workforce patron Alain Nadal and prompted Piquet to enter the single-make collection for the Lamborghini Huracan Tremendous Trofeo EVO with backing from Motorsport Games (NASDAQ:MSGM).

“It was a bit out of the blue,” says Piquet, whose most up-to-date GT expertise got here with an Worldwide GT Open cameo in a BMW M6 GT3 at Spa in 2017. “I knew Alain, I had seen him earlier than a very long time in the past as a result of I used to dwell in Miami, so it was an excellent coincidence.

“I’m all the time open for a problem, going out of my consolation zone has been all the time one thing that I’ve accepted and brought as an fascinating problem to be taught and take in extra data.

“I’m a giant believer that the extra you’re on monitor, the higher you get – it doesn’t matter how a lot expertise you’ve got. These days testing shouldn’t be one thing that we do so much, so for me it was an excellent probability to drive a bit extra.”

Piquet readily accepts that he has had a studying curve to adapt to the Huracan, which partly explains his transfer away from sharing a automobile with Jiminez on the Austin season opener to his personal machine for the latest Virginia Worldwide Raceway (VIR) double-header.

Piquet has taken on his latest challenge in one-make Lamborghini racing

Piquet has taken on his newest problem in one-make Lamborghini racing

Picture by: Motorsport Images/Jamey Value

“There’s so little seat-time within the weekend,” he says, “and while you share it, it simply turns into even more durable.”

One of many collection benchmarks is Richard Antinucci, a Lamborghini specialist with years of GT expertise beneath his belt. Piquet has crossed paths with him earlier than – in 2003, they completed third and fourth within the British Method three championship – and says his F1 background is not any benefit in comparison with drivers like Antinucci who’re totally comfy with each the “extraordinarily fast” automobile and the difficult tracks.

“The tracks in America are a bit tough,” he says. “VIR is the trickiest monitor I’ve pushed thus far and to do half an hour follow then go to qualifying, you don’t actually decide up a number of issues, particularly when it’s a two-minute lap.

“The automobiles are quick, a lot faster than Inventory Automobile Brazil – the automobiles over there I’d say are in all probability heavier, much less energy, no TC, no ABS in anyway and over right here you’ve got all that, so it is advisable to learn to use the driving aids.

“We’re getting there. Nonetheless, Antinucci is a driver that has been driving [Lamborghinis] ceaselessly and these tracks, so he’s fairly a giant step forward of us. I bear in mind we drove collectively in British F3, he was all the time one of many fast guys over there racing with Carlin again within the day.

“There are a number of guys that didn’t make it to F1 who’ve an excellent calibre, so you place them in one thing that they get used to and so they get comfy – like Antinucci in a Lamborghini – and he turns into a really powerful man to beat.

Piquet has resumed his rivalry with Antinucci from British Formula 3 in 2003

Piquet has resumed his rivalry with Antinucci from British Method three in 2003

Picture by: Motorsport Images/Jamey Value

“Tracks within the States have robust traits; not a number of runoff areas, fairly bumpy, they use a number of kerbs as a result of the tracks are so slim, and he is aware of it from the again of his hand.

“But it surely’s a problem that I get pleasure from and I do know I’ve to push myself to get there. It’s not not possible as a result of he can do it, so which means different folks can do it too. It’s only a query of getting miles and discovering the restrict of the monitor and the automobile.”

Piquet remains to be ready for a primary podium go to in Lamborghinis, having run out of gas at Austin and been set again by a brake failure in qualifying at Virginia that meant he began from the again in each races. However he’s actually not lowered his expectations consequently.

Requested about his objectives for this yr, Piquet says he’s aiming “to attempt to win at the least a race”.

“And to get comfy with the automobile,” he provides, “if we do it subsequent yr once more, to have an excellent probability of successful the championship.

“We’ve had reliability points which took a little bit of seat time which I wanted, however in just a few weeks’ time we’re in Watkins Glen, which I’m wanting ahead to.”

Regardless of the challenges, his transfer into one-make GT racing has been solely worthwhile.

“I’ve been having a number of enjoyable,” he says.

Tricky nature of US circuits amplifies Piquet's learning curve

Tough nature of US circuits amplifies Piquet’s studying curve

Picture by: Motorsport Images/Jamey Value



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