Simon Pagenaud says Audi remains a serious threat at Silverstone
|By Sam Tremayne||Saturday, September 10th 2011, 19:37 GMT|
Simon Pagenaud says Audi remains a threat to Peugeot's hopes of winning the AUTOSPORT 6 Hours of Silverstone despite his impressive margin in qualifying.
Pagenaud, a late replacement for the injured Anthony Davidson, belied his total lack of experience on the Silverstone circuit to finish more than 0.9s clear of the field in tricky qualifying conditions.
The Frenchman admitted that both he and Peugeot were in good shape for the race, but tipped the season-long duel between the French marque and Audi to continue well into the race.
"It was a good qualifying for us, the team put me in a good position," Pagenaud explained. "I knew the car was good, and with the rain I knew what I had to do: go for it.
"However I wouldn't read too much into the lap times today - Audi is always very close to us and vice versa. That has been a general trend for the season; it's great for the fans, great for the show, and it will continue like that."
Despite pulling into the pitlane seven minutes from the end, Pagenaud also said he was not fully confident he had sealed pole until Audi made the decision not to push for a final run.
"We had to be smart with the weather, understand what it was doing. [On my best lap] I didn't see any sprinklings so I went for it, but after it started to rain harder so I pulled in.
"I don't like celebrating before the chequered flag, as I don't want to curse it or bring bad luck, so I waited, waited and finally when I saw the Audi was still in the pits I knew it was done.
"It's only qualifying so I don't want to celebrate too much though: it was nice, but the race is what we concentrate on."