In front of their home crowd, including hundreds of invited guests, Aston Martin Racing celebrated a dominant double victory in both the LMGTE Pro and LMGTE Am categories at the 6 Hours of Silverstone.
Darren Turner, Stefan Mücke and Bruno Senna completed a perfect race to win the Pro category in their No.97 Aston Martin Vantage V8, having led the race from pole position to the chequered flag. They managed to survive early technical issues, rain showers and pressure in the first hour from both its sister No.99 Aston Martin Vantage and the No.51 AF Corse Ferrari 458 of Gianmaria Bruni and Giancarlo Fisichella. However, as the race progressed the No. 97 stretched out a lead that they were never going to relinquish and finished one lap ahead of their nearest rival in class.
The No. 99 Aston Martin Vantage V8, driven by Pedro Lamy, Paul Dalla Lana & Frederic Makowiecki also managed to make the podium in the LMGTE Pro class finishing third behind the No. 71 AF Corse Ferrari driven by Kamui Kobayashi and Toni Vilander.
Similar to Bruno Senna, Kobayashi was making his debut in the FIA WEC and alongside his driving partner, Toni Vilander, they were thrilled to finish second. The other AF Corse Ferrari driven by Gianmaria Bruni and Giancarlo Fisichella (Last year’s leading LMGTE Pro pairing) , had a difficult race and ended up having to make one more pit stop than their rivals which cost them important position. Although the new Porsche 911 RSRs from Manthey Racing were not able to claim a podium finish on this occasion, the car’s performance on track was impressive and it will surely not be long before their results improve.
The race In the LMGTE Am category provided drama right until the end, although fortunately none of it affected the class winners in the No. 95 Aston Martin Vantage V8; Christian Nygaard, Kristian Poulsen and Alan Simonsen. The Danish trio, unlike their LMGTE Pro team mates, had to wait until the second hour to take the lead of the class but, once in that position, they didn’t relinquish their grip and finished a resounding three laps ahead of their nearest rival.
A fantastic battle took place between the second and third placed cars – the No.50 Larbre Competition Corvette C6-ZR1 and the No.81 8Star Motorsports Ferrari 458 Italia – although the final finishing positions could so easily have been reversed. In the final laps of the race Rui Aguas in the Ferrari was holding second position, closely pursued by Fernando Rees in the Corvette, until the Ferrari was hit from behind by the French car. The contact led to a left rear puncture with just four minutes of the race to go. Although they quickly returned to the race, the orange Ferrari was forced to concede the second step of the podium.
The race-winning No.97 Aston Martin Vantage V8 LMGTE Pro completed 171 laps of the 3.7-mile Silverstone circuit, equating to a total race distance of more than 630 miles at an average speed of 108mph. A great performance from the Aston Martin Racing team.