Brundle frustrated after fuel stop issue in Portugal
PUBLISHED: 16:32 06 November 2019 | UPDATED: 16:32 06 November 2019
Alex Brundle is still mystified how he didn’t manage to finish on the European Le Mans Series podium at the final round of the season at Portimao in Portugal.
"Just after a nice move for P3 the final fuel stop came," said the King's Lynn racer. "But it seems Graff Racing can put the same amount of fuel in their car six seconds faster than us with a standardised rig, which is something we will have to look at, and jumped us for P3."
Brundle put in a great qualifying lap to secure fourth place for the #32 United Autosports ORECA 07 with Ryan Cullen starting the event and quickly grabbing third place just before the race was halted after a multi-car accident.
The race re-started almost an hour later with Cullen inheriting second place when the car ahead headed for the pits just before a safety car intervention.
Will Owen then took over at the wheel and climbed back to third place before handing over to Brundle to complete the race.
The local racer resumed in fifth place and caught and passed the third-placed car before his final fuel stop but was unable to repeat the feat for a second time and had to settle for fourth place. "A decent result anyway," reflected a puzzled Brundle.
Attleborough's Jeremy Clark, British Touring Car driver Olly Jackson and Ollie Samways joined Citroen C1 owner Neil Chilleystone, from Higham, to contest the 24 Hours at Spa Francorchamps in Belgium.
The team started the race from 28th place in a field of 149, made up of a variety of cars, and worked their way up to 10th in their category before Chilleystone was hit in the early hours of the morning at the infamous Eau Rouge corner, resulting in a spin and heavy contact with the safety barrier.
The team worked hard to realign the bent back axle as best they could, but the car proved difficult to drive as Clark, now confirmed as retaining his 70s Road Sports crown, found out in the pouring rain as the sun was rising.
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Jackson, Samways and Chilleystone completed the race with its owner claiming 22nd in class with two laps to go.
"It was a challenge, but an amazing one," said Clark. "It wasn't the position we wished for, but considering all that went on it was a very proud moment when the car finally crossed the finish line in the hands of Neil with celebrations all round."
Banham's Matthew Stubbington narrowly missed out on claiming third place in the Classic Stock Hatch series after two hectic races at Silverstone.
Stubbington managed to finish in third place in the opening contest and started race two from pole position, but became tangled up among the slower Hot Hatches, and could only finish in fifth place to miss out on third place to race two winner Andrew Thorpe by 14 points.
Fellow Banham racer Paul Brock non-started either race while Richard Kelsall, also from Banham, retired his similar Ford Fiesta after four laps of the opening contest but claimed 12th place in race two.
Attleborough's Darren Bassingthwaighte narrowly missed out on a top-10 place in the opening event and went on to finish race two in 16th place.
In the absence of Blofield's Martin Ward, who had already clinched the Class B Hot Hatch title, Kings Lynn's Philip Wright was able to take a pair of class victories while giving the overall race leaders, in their faster Class A cars, something to think about.
Shaun Green, from Attleborough, claimed fifth in the same category in the opening race and went one place better in the second encounter with his Honda Civic Type R.
Luke Clayton set new Time Attack bench marks on both the 200 and 300 layouts at Snetterton in his Bentley GT3 Continental lapping the shorter layout on Sunday at 103.25mph and some nine seconds quicker than second-placed James Allen with his Ford Focus.
On Saturday the Bentley driver had lapped the longer layout only 5.6 seconds quicker than Allen at an average speed of 81.51mph.
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