At the end of a qualifying session which resulted in an all-Ferrari front row, we gathered the thoughts of some of the Paul Ricard protagonists.
Toni Vilander: “It’s a special day considering that Sergey [Sirotkin, Editor’s note], Antonio [Fuoco, Editor’s note] and I met for the first time yesterday. We immediately got positive indications about this morning’s free practice and the feeling that we could be competitive. We made changes to the car setup which turned out to be spot on. All three of us lapped a lot and were able to face the qualifying with confidence even if we weren’t sure of what we could aspire to. But that’s the beauty of the sport! We were able to take pole position in one of the toughest GT3 championships in the world. I can’t hide how excited I am. 2020 was a very special year and it is great to have achieved this result. Obviously the race is a different story and we’ll have to see how it goes tomorrow. For the moment I would like to thank SMP and AF Corse and all the Ferrari staff. I am happy to have expressed myself at this level in this championship, to have given it my best shot and to have made the most of my potential. It is a day that I will remember for a long time.”
Antonio Fuoco: “It was a very good qualifying session. It was the first time I have driven the car at night, so I tried to learn the track as quickly as possible in these conditions before making my attempt, which turned out really well. I am really happy that the team has taken its first pole of the year and for my first pole in this series. Now we have to try to finish the job in tomorrow’s race.”
Sergey Sirotkin: “We finally managed to get a result that I think we deserved perhaps more than many others. We were hoping to get this pole but we have only managed to do it now, I can only thank the team for that. We know the race will be different but we are looking forward to tomorrow to try to finish the season with an excellent result.”
Alessandro Pier Guidi: “We’ve taken the front row, which shows we’re competitive. I would say that it is the right race to do it as the title is still at play, even if tomorrow the weather forecast is not so good and, if it rains, we will not be among the favourites.”
Tom Blomqvist: “A really positive day for us in the #51 today. We were quick in the two practice sessions so we knew we could be in the fight for pole position. I was pleased with my lap and my teammates did a fantastic job in their qualifying sessions too. P2 is a great place to start tomorrow but it’s a long race so we are staying focused. A big thanks to the team for all their efforts – I hope we can repay them with a strong result tomorrow!”