Sebastian Gravlund

Sebastian Gravlund secured a top position after an action-packed debut in the Prototype Winter Series at Portimaõ.

The weekend’s races with Inter Europol Competition were meant as a taste of what endurance racing could offer the young racer. After two days of training in rainy weather, Saturday began with drying asphalt followed by a setback:

– I quickly got comfortable in the car and was right up there with the lap times in Thursday and Friday’s training. On Saturday, I got a few laps in mixed conditions, so it wasn’t super optimal, says Sebastian, who was to drive the last of the day’s two qualifying sessions.

He never got that far because on the way to a fast lap, teammate, Portuguese Pedro Perino, experienced a total brake failure and went off the track at 250 kilometers per hour.

– The car logically got severely damaged, and Pedro had to go to the hospital for a check-up. He pulled 16 G when the car hit the wall, so just the fact that he didn’t get seriously hurt shows how safe such a race car has become, says Sebastian Gravlund, who had to skip his qualifying session while the mechanics at Inter Europol Competition fought to get the car ready for the weekend’s first race, scheduled to be run later in the afternoon. Due to Pedro Perino’s off, the plan was for Sebastian to drive the entire race himself.

– It was a bit wild thought because it’s my debut weekend, the car is smashed to bits, and if it gets ready, I have to drive the whole race on my own in an hour. It would have been a wild experience, but just before I was to get in the car, the technicians found a new error, so they didn’t dare send the car on the track, says Sebastian, who had to hope for a better Sunday.

Impression from Prototype Winter Series – Round 2 – Portimão by GEDLICH Racing at Autódromo Internacional do Algarve in Portugal on the 21.01.2024

After a night’s sleep, the Portuguese co-driver was back in the pit garage, and the car was declared ready for Sunday’s race. The start was with Sebastian at the wheel of the car, which was at the very back of the field, but it didn’t stay there for long. Before half of the race was run, the Danish LMP3 debutant had driven the car up to fourth place, after which he handed over the wheel to Pedro Perino, who continued the progress and drove the car across the finish line in second place – right behind the leading car.

– I actually think that if we had just had one or two more laps, Pedro would have taken the lead. But regardless, it was a bit of a wild result after Saturday’s events, says a satisfied Sebastian Gravlund, who could imagine more endurance racing on the calendar:

– It’s a cool way to work. To succeed, cooperation and savings must be between the drivers, and the setup becomes a compromise because both drivers have to be able to work with it. It worked really well, maybe also thanks to the team’s experiences, and I think it has been a good way to try it out, says Sebastian Gravlund.