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Third race ruined by Safety Car period

Third race ruined by Safety Car period
Date: 30-04-2017 By: JanJonck Presse

Jan Jønck and his teammate William Phillips had their race ruined by a Safety Car period at the third round of the British GT Championship at the Rockingham circuit.

Jan’s teammate Will started the race in the no.42 Aston Martin V8 Vantage GT4 car, using a revised set-up to try and preserve the Aston’s rear tyres, which struggle on the abrasive Rockingham asphalt. The changes that the team had made were clearly beneficial, as Will began picking off his rivals. That progress was dramatically halted by the intervention of the Safety Car for a second time in the race, midway through his stint:

“Our race was really completely undone by the Safety Car,” says Will. “I was up to 8th and we’d just been passed by the leader – our GT3 sister car – when it came out. That meant that we lost touch with the GT4 leaders, as they were ahead of the no.24 car on the road and were free to race around to join the back of the queue that we were near the front of, effectively costing us a lap.

“We had made a decision to sacrifice a little pace, to preserve the tyres, which worked superbly and my tyres were only starting to give up, 5 laps before the pit-stops, which was ideal...

Jan Jønck took over the car, knowing he faced an uphill struggle to make much headway, being a lap down on most of their class rivals.

“My stint was pretty tough,” said Jan, “but we had decent pace. Most of the cars that were a lap ahead were around me on track and we could match their speed, so our car clearly has the potential… our race was just undone by that misfortune with the Safety Car.”

When the chequered flag came out, the no.42 car was classified in 11th place, sixth of the Silver pairings – scant reward for all the team’s hard work and not indicative of the car’s pace and the drivers’ potential.

“Rockingham dealt us two very different hands,” said Team Principal David Macmillan. “Naturally, we are thrilled to have claimed out first podium in GT3, in only our third race. Had James not had his lead slashed by the Safety Car, who knows what might have happened...

“The other side of that particular coin left our GT4 drivers in a position where they had no realistic hope of catching the cars ahead.

“That’s racing, I suppose, but we’ll bounce back in Snetterton. We know both teams are fast enough and good enough. Now we just need some luck to prove it!"


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