It was a tough day at the office for actor/driver Patrick Dempsey and the Advanced Engineering – Team Seattle crew at Le Mans. In today’s three hours of qualifying sessions, the best that the #81 Ferrari F430 could manage left the team with the 54th starting spot among the 55 entries.
The day wasn’t entirely a loss. Their fastest lap was a 4:13.920 which was 51 seconds behind the pole sitting Peugeot 908 which is entered in the LMP1 class. Comparing the Ferrari and Peugeot would be unfair because Dempsey and the #81 team are entered in the GT2 class which is the slowest on the grid while LMP1 cars are the fastest. That’s not meant to cover their performance in class. They were 10.72 seconds off the pace of the GT2 class lead and 3 seconds off the pace of the next fastest car which left them 17th and last among GT2 cars.
I’m sure if you’re reading this, you’re interested in how Dempsey ran today. After a fairly good day in the wet yesterday (Dempsey wrote on his blog that he enjoys running in wet conditions), things got off to a shaky start. On his first lap out, he spun at the slow left-hander called Indianapolis. Movie buffs would recall from the movie Le Mans that it was the location where the Ferrari caught air and crashed through the Martini and Rossi sign.
UPDATE: Joe Foster set the fast time for the #81 team in qualifying. Dempsey’s 4:27.264 was the second fastest of the team’s three drivers, besting Don Kitch Jr.
(Photo by Bryn Lennon of Getty Images)