British GT Round 9
Donington Park, UK
11th September 2016
After getting our first win last time out at Snetterton, Sandy and I were hoping to keep the momentum going into the last round of the championship at Donington. It was still possible to get third in the championship which was great considering the issues we had earlier in the year. Unfortunately I injured myself during the week at work and had a cast on but I was determined to get in the car as it was the last race of the year.
The practice sessions on Saturday morning were very wet which I was glad about as that would be easier on my hand. We were comfortably quickest and didn’t do too much running as it looked like the rest of the weekend would be dry.
Our first run in the dry was qualifying on Saturday afternoon. Sandy was out first and did a great job to put us on provisional pole. In my session I made a couple of mistakes and even spun off at one point but I got it all together in the end and qualified 2nd, just 0.1 seconds off pole.
The start of the race on Sunday morning went exactly as we planned – Sandy made an awesome getaway and jumped into the lead before turn one.
By lap two he had a comfortable 3 second gap but then the safety car came out due to a couple of GT3 cars coming together at Craner Curves on lap one and on the restart he pulled away again and got to the point where the gap was hovering between 3 and 4 seconds. Before he handed the car over to me he had a commanding lead of about 8 seconds.
The pit stop went smoothly, although the driver change took a bit longer as Sandy had to do all the work to strap me in, but rejoined in the lead and the gap was about 3 seconds over Matthew Graham in the Aston Martin behind.
The gap stayed very constant as I worked my way through traffic but as the stint went on we increased our lead to about 10 seconds even though we were trying to save the brakes, ‘cos Donington is very hard on brakes, so that was the main concern for my stint.
As the laps went by my left shoulder started to fatigue and cramp up due to the extra load I was putting on it because I couldn’t grip properly with my right hand. Despite driving almost one handed I brought the car home for its second win of the season.