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Brundle: wet race not good for Bentley

Martin Brundle is concerned that the Bentley team may face problems if the 69th Le Mans 24 Hours turns into a wet race

The former Grand Prix star believes that visibility may be reduced due to condensation inside the closed top GTP sportscar.

"The problem is that our car lets a lot of water in," Brundle said. "Because of the venturi coming through the side to feed the intercoolers, you get a lot of high velocity air through there and it just becomes nearly impossible to keep the water out of the doors. Then you get fog on the screen."

Brundle has had bad luck in the rain at Le Mans and said that if it rains he hoped that it would rain all over the circuit rather than just in places.

"The last time it rained was in 1998 and I crashed," said Brundle. "So if it rains I'd like it to rain properly - not just drizzling in one place. I spoke to Derek Bell yesterday and I'm told that it is quite different at different parts of the track.

"The Mulsanne apparently is always very wet because they used a very closed tarmac for the heavier vehicles. Then I'm told that it is always easier coming back towards Indianapolis, then I'm assuming that the race track will drain in a different way. I hope it is wet in the warm-up so I can find out."

Brundle is less concerned about aquaplaning however: "It should be okay. When you have a lot of downforce, it pushes you through the water. But the tyre can only clear so much water. When you are driving along you can see the water but you don't know how deep it is. In the end the tyre gets saturated.

"You rely on the downforce, you rely on the tread pattern. And also there are 48 cars in the race, but later on when you are down to say 25 cars it will be different. If you have got 48 cars going around they disperse the water and you don't feel the build up, but if it is raining really heavily and let's say the lap times are 4m30s, what was acceptable down the straight one lap you may find that on the next, it will be at that critical point of saturation."

Bentley's current wet weather tally stands at just 10 laps of running.


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