Le Mans »

Salo 'disappointed' to miss race

Having been denied the opportunity to successfully defend his Le Mans 24 Hours GT2 class laurels following team-mate Matias Russo's hefty qualifying accident in 2010, AF Corse star Mika Salo vows to return
Mika Salo has conceded that he is naturally 'disappointed' to be missing out on the chance to successfully defend his GT2 class laurels in the 2010 Le Mans 24 Hours this weekend – but he admits that the most important thing following the Wednesday night qualifying accident that ruled the AF Corse #96 entry out of the running is that Matias Russo escaped thankfully unscathed.

Russo lost the Ferrari 430GTC in the Porsche Curves, and the damage was so great as to render it out-of-action for the remainder of the weekend. Salo acknowledged that the car 'wasn't good' when it returned to the pit garage – “We were waiting until 1:30am when we got it back, and immediately we realised it wasn't fixable,” he revealed – and as such, he is consigned to spending the remainder of the event sat frustrated on the sidelines.

“Of course I'm disappointed, but the main thing after what happened to Matias is that he's okay,” the Finn told Crash.net at La Sarthe. “He didn't injure himself so seriously that it will still affect him in a couple of days. He didn't remember anything about the accident; he came back from hospital and he was still a bit confused about the whole thing.

“We showed him a video and he said 'oh, okay, now I know'. He just clipped a kerb and lost it, basically; he was pushing hard as it was a qualifying run and he was going for a quick lap time and just made a mistake.”

Confessing to being 'not a good spectator', Salo hinted that he would likely not stick around for the duration of the race, but made a point of wishing the sister car – piloted by fellow ex-grand prix aces Jean Alesi and Giancarlo Fisichella, alongside countryman Toni Vilander – good luck, opining that 'they have a good chance'. And as to returning for a fifth bite at the Le Mans cherry in 2011, the 43-year-old reflected that given 'a competitive team and car, I'll be back'.
by Russell Atkins

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Mika Salo
Luis Perez-Companc (Arg) Matias Russo (Arg) Mika Salo (Fin)  #96 AF Corse SRL  , Ferrari 430 GTC  24 Heures Du Mans Le Mans 24 Hour Le Mans France
Mika Salo
Sergey Zlobin SMP Racing Oreca 03 Nissan
WEC Interlagos
Mark Webber Porsche AG Porsche 919 Hybrid
Mark Webber Porsche AG Porsche 919 Hybrid
Darren Turner Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin Vantage V8
A small tuck in the paddock
A small tuck in the paddock
Benoit Treluyer Audi Sport Team Joest Audia R18 e-tron quattro
Toyota Racing
Toyota Racing
Toyota Racing 2014 Champions
Toyota Racing 2014 Champions
Nicki Thiim Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin Vantage V8
Race start Timo Bernhard / Mark Webber / Brendon Hartley Porsche AG Porsche 919 Hybrid leads

Start the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.

© 1999 - 2014 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.