|It’s been a rollercoaster ride so far for Salih Yoluc in the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup and heading to the Total 24 Hours of Spa next weekend, the first Turkish Blancpain winner is hoping for a change in fortune following disappointment at Paul Ricard last month.
After not being able to start at Monza, Salih, teammates Euan Hankey and Darren Burke stood on the top step of the Pro-Am podium at Silverstone to record the first win of the season in the #49 RAM Racing Mercedes AMG GT3. The French round of the championship was all going to plan until the final hour where a certain victory was denied by an engine failure.
Despite the setbacks, Salih is fourth in the championship standings with 35 points, just 17 shy of the championship lead and with 50 available in the 24 hour race itself, the title remains wide open.
Heading to Spa, Salih is joined by Swedish driver Felix Rosenqvist, who has an impressive record in both single-seater and GT cars having won the European F3 championship, Macau before finishing third last year with Mahindra Racing in FIA Formula E. The team, minus Rosenqvist, took part in the SRO one-day test at Spa earlier in the month and are looking forward to getting the championship challenge back on track this coming weekend.
“The test went well, it is a bit hard to judge how we did compared to the others because everybody is sandbagging a little, so it’s difficult to comment on that,” said Salih. “I felt we were fast compared to the other Mercedes' on track, so that is a positive.
“About the race, we'll try to get the maximum points as possible after the disappointment at Paul Ricard and to get our championship on target ahead of the last round. I believe we have a good and fast package and getting maximum points is very possible. We just need some luck for a change…”
The schedule gets underway with testing on Tuesday followed by a parade through Spa town the following day. Practice continues Thursday with qualifying and then the Super Pole Friday ahead of Saturday’s start.