Monday, October 19, 2009

Nicholas Mee Racing’s regular drivers Christiaen Van Lanschot and Karsten Le Blanc, along with guest driver Sarah Bennett-Baggs, finished the Britcar 500 6-hour race at Silverstone on 3rd October in a fine 15th position overall and 2nd of the Aston Martin Challenge contenders. Driving the team’s Aston Martin Vantage V8 GT4, this fine placing confirmed NMR’s first place in the ’09 AM Vantage GT4 Challenge series*.

NMR welcomed a new driver for the race, Sarah Bennett-Baggs, an experienced racer who has had enjoyed a successful career behind the wheel of a variety of cars, most recently an Aston Martin N24.

Friday saw three hours of qualifying during which NMR secured a satisfactory 27th place on the grid and was 2nd of the Aston Martin Challengers

Van Lanschot took the start but suffered a spin on the opening lap while bringing the GT4’s slick tyres up to full operating temperature. Some fine driving saw him claw his way back to a mid-field position, before handing over to Bennett-Baggs after a 2 hour stint.

Bennett-Baggs immediately demonstrated that she needed little time to become accustomed to a new car and team by posting some excellent lap times, and so made further progress toward the front of the field. As darkness began to fall, so did the rain but, following a fortuitous pit-stop for tyres and fuel, Bennett-Baggs became the fastest driver on the circuit.

At 8.20pm Bennett-Baggs handed over to Le Blanc for the last sector of the race. He drove superbly on a drying track with worn rain tyres but at the chequered flag the team settled for 2nd place in the AM Challenge and a very credible 15th overall (out of 43 starters).

The 2nd place finish confirmed NMR's victory in the 2009 Aston Martin Vantage GT4 Challenge – a highly satisfying result for a newly-formed team.

Having popped the corks on several bottles of champagne in NMR’s hospitality awning, Team Principal Nicholas Mee said, “I’m incredibly proud of what the team has done this season. We’ve achieved exactly what we set out to achieve and I’d like to thank all our drivers, commercial partners, Team Manager Craig Dawson and, by no means least, the hard-working NMR pit crew – the best in pit lane”.

AMR Teams
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