Round three of the 2015 European Le Mans Series at the spectacular Red Bull Ring in Austria saw the #3 Team LNT Ginetta Nissan of Sir Chris Hoy and Charlie Robertson dominate proceedings, the all-Scottish pair completing the four hour race a full three laps clear of the second placed Ginetta in the LMP3 class.
Starting from class pole position on a circuit which ideally suited the GT cars, Ginetta racing prodigy Charlie Robertson found himself in a close fight right from the green light, saying; “I found myself in fights that had us three or even four wide more than once but kept it very clean, had no contact and soon settled in to pick off the other cars whenever I could.”
That saw the #3 car move up from 16th position on the grid up into the top 10 as the Ginetta fended off the competition from the other LMP3s and dealt too with a strong field of GTEs.“We have a big advantage through the faster turns but here the corners are slower and suit the way the GTE’s get their power down. It was tough to make progress but very rewarding.”continued Robertson.
Sir Chris Hoy came into the race after competing at the same track last weekend, scoring a first ever solo podium finish: “It was great to have some miles here already and to race at a track I was familiar with. The lead that Charlie gave me meant we were very soon thinking about preserving our class position. But you can never relax, that’s how silly mistakes creep in and I’m delighted to say that we all kept our concentration and brought it home.”
Chris brought the car back to the pits after a faultless double stint still with a strong lead, setting up a further push to the finish from Charlie and a second win of the ELMS season for the #3 crew.“The whole team were faultless today" said Chris. “The car never missed a beat, the stops were perfect, we can feel the progress that is being made with the LMP3 and it really sets up the Championship fight for Paul Ricard."
Ginetta Technical Director Ewan Baldry said: “This was a tough place to get a win so to come away with maximum points is a huge result for Ginetta and for Team LNT. There has been clear progress with what is still a very new car and with more to come.”
A maximum haul of 26 points (25 for the win and a single point for pole position) sees the #3 crew lead the Championship by 12 points from University of Bolton Team RLR Ginetta driver Rob Garofall and by 19 points from Nissan GT Academy winner Gaetan Paletou in the sister #2 Team LNT Ginetta Nissan.Two four hour races remain - at Le Castellet Circuit in France on 6 September and Estoril in Portugal on 18 October - to decide the first ever LMP3 Champions of the European Le Mans Series.