The final round of the 2016 AMOC intermarque championship was held at Silverstone, on the national circuit. Friday testing went very well, with a lap times set that would have put us at the front of the grid if the weather was to stay dry.
Unfortunately, the weather didn’t stay dry into Saturday, with a down pour arriving as the cars assembled before the qualifying session. So on dry tyres and with a dry setup qualifying was very slippery and we ended up a disappointing 7th in the Intermarque race. We spent the next part of the day hoping the weather would clear up and give us a dry race, but we were not so lucky.
With a large down pour around 30 minutes before the scheduled race start an easy decision was made to switch to wet weather tyres.
The race started in the worst conditions of the day, with heavy rain and nearly every car on wet tyres there was so much spray visibility was almost at zero, not aided by the fact the windscreen had steamed up.
With hindsight the race should have started under safety car conditions, and Tom Black proved by spinning into the pit wall at the end of the first lap, the chasing pack doing a very good job avoiding him when unsighted.
This brought out the safety car and a chance to wipe the screen and open the door to get some air on it. After a few laps behind the safety car the screen cleared and we got underway again. The car clearly much better now on a wet setup and wet tyres we started to work our way forwards.
After the pit stop and the field started to spread out driving became easier as did visibility. Another off caused a safety car and gave us a chance to get closer to our rivals in the 968s ahead. Unfortunately, at the safety car restart we had some back marking traffic that took several laps to clear and by that time Steve Atkinson in 2nd place was around 6 seconds ahead. So with Steve in sight we set about catching him, and taking some time out of him over the next few laps we were gaining ground. As I pushed slightly too hard coming into Brooklands corner, in front of family in the grandstand I went wide onto the tarmac run off. We lost around 3 seconds to Steve, and I made my decision to back off and make sure the car finished with no unnecessary damage.
James Hilliard the championship leader and race leader received a drive through penalty for track limit infringements, and this brought him out of the pit lane just ahead of me. By now, a couple laps after I decided to back the pace off the tyres had dropped pressure and temperature. With James determined not to be caught and now on cold tyres we couldn’t fight for second. The race finished with Steve winning, James 2nd and we came 3rd.
Considering we weren’t confident with the car in wet weather we were very pleased with the result, especially on a day were conditions were so bad we would have just been happy to have the car undamaged, which it was.
We’re already looking forward to and planning for 2017 season.
The video bellow its hard to see much out the windscreen for the first couple of laps, then it clears up, but its exactly as much as I saw, so you know how hard it was.