Jeffrey Schmidt at the VLN Endurance Championship at the Nürburgring
Debut for Jeffrey Schmidt: This will be the first time that the Montaplast by Land Motorsport driver has faced the challenge of the Nürburgring-Nordschleife in a GT3 car in the context of the VLN Endurance Championship. Together with erstwhile Porsche brand cup team-mate Michael Ammermüller, Schmidt aims to take forward the momentum from the biggest team success of the year, namely the victory for Montaplast by Land Motorsport in the recent prestigious 24-hour race at the Nürburgring. The Swiss racer has his marching orders – nothing less than a victory will do. All the necessary conditions are in place: Schmidt has been competing in the ADAC GT Masters as a member of the Montaplast by Land Motorsport squad and is therefore intimately acquainted with the German outfit and with the car.
Jeffrey, it’s a great honour for you to be competing in the third VLN race of the season as a member of the team which won the previous 24-hour race at the Nürburgring…
Yes, you’re right. I’m looking forward to competing in the VLN. It’s marvellous, of course, to be driving for one of the best and biggest teams. The track is a very special one for me. The layout and the history have given it an iconic status in motor racing. I am very grateful for the confidence that has been placed in me by Montaplast by Land Motorsport, who are my team in the ADAC GT Masters.
After the victory in the 24-hour race, their expectations are obviously running high. How are you handling that aspect?
The victory has left giant footprints to follow in, but it’s the sort of challenge that I relish. As always, I will be giving it everything I’ve got, and I’ll also be using the weekend for learning purposes. I haven’t driven a GT3 car on the Nürburgring before. Another new feature will be the tyres. I’m therefore going to come away from this weekend with a lot of new impressions. Essentially, though, I’m always up for new challenges.
In Michael Ammermüller, you have a long-time partner to share the cockpit with. How do you rate your package overall?
Our objective is nothing less than victory. If your team wins the 24-hour race here, you have to consider yourself a genuine contender in this third VLN race for the very top rung of the podium. It won’t be easy considering the strength of the opposition we’re up against, but we will be giving it everything we’ve got. I’ll be applying my personal motto of “Head down and full throttle”. It’s obviously great to be sharing the Audi R8 LMS with Michael Ammermüller. I know him very well from my time at Porsche. We were team-mates for three years under Walter Lechner; we always got on very well with each other and had a great time. Michael is also very familiar with the Nordschleife. A couple of years ago, he competed in races there as an Audi works driver, and most recently for Porsche. So we are in great shape, and I just can’t wait to get started.