Race summary 24 hours of Silverstone 2016
......first issue to face us as dusk arrived was in issue with a mis-firing engine during my early evening first stint! In fact the throttle was either full on or full off. Made it a big challenge to throttle steer with any sense of control through the curves! Team worked expediently to get that sorted and we were quickly back in the running.
As night fell upon us we all had to deal with a very dark infield. None of us had any prior experience racing at Silverstone so it took us quite a while to get our bearings. Thankfully the first hours of the night were dry so we could focus on critical reference points. Not an easy task on this track as the infield is not lit up and reflective markers on teh apexes of turns were few and far between. Sometimes it was dead reckoning when there were no other compeitors around to light up the track for us!! I call that creative driving with a twist!!
Alas dry conditions did not last very long as massive amounts of rain arrived as forecast in the early hours of the morning. For the next 5 hours we had our work cut out for us. In contrast to the British BTCC drivers present none of us had any recent rain experience. We could see the difference in lap times to start with. Gradually three of us got into the pace and even with limited visibility actually started to enjoy my stint. Our nr. 4 driver however never managed to come to grips with the difficult conditions. Handling of the car and grip was superb so much so that we were setting the pace for others on track. In fact at one point we were actually one of the quickest out there!!
We had another alert towards dawn with a an electric relay related to our sequential transmission that needed to be replaced. Team again professionally responded and we lost minimum of time!
From then on it was more or less smooth sailing. My co-drivers Jeremy Reymond quickest of us all did a stellar job setting the pace for the rest of the race. Cyril Calmon and Lionel Amrouche stayed out of trouble when it mattered as did yours truly with a few close calls with other competitors spinning out of control in the braking zone. Having been around for some time now I start recognizing and anticipating such situations and so give these competitors extra space!!
Towards the end of the morning we had managed to work our way up to 4th in class with about 5 laps to number three in class. We continued to put pressure on Nr. 3 setting a blistering pace in the process and hoping something would give. Three hours from the end Nr. 3 suffered a turbo failure putting them out of contention. Best news of the day! We now reduced our pace to secure the 3rd place finish and the rest was history.