Team LNT once again impressed in the V de V championship at Magny Cours last weekend (10/11 October), after translating a front-row qualifying lockout into another podium result for the factory outfit.
Lawrence Tomlinson, Mike Simpson and Aleksander Schjerpen took their second podium result in as many races as their Ginetta Prototype crossed the line in second place following Sundays race, whilst
Having locked out the front row of the grid with their two cars finishing 1-2 in qualifying, Simpson started the four hour encounter behind the wheel of the #32 car, whilst Dons was first up in the #24 Ginetta Prototype.
On fine form, Simpson pulled out a 36 second lead in the opening nine laps until the race was brought under safety car. With proceedings neutralised, the team opted to make their first driver change, but an issue during the refuelling put the crew a lap down.
With Ginetta boss Tomlinson behind the wheel, the car was soon back onto the lead lap, and had climbed to eighth position before handing over to Schjerpen. Picking up another two places during his 70 minute drive, the Norwegian gave controls back to Simpson to complete the final 90 minutes of the race; an impressive performance for Schjerpen in his first race under darkness.
Now in full darkness, Simpson got his head down and set fastest lap after fastest lap, traversing the circuit an average of 2-3 seconds quicker than any other car, and setting a new V de V GT Endurance lap record in the process, with a 1min 37.6s.
Regaining the lead before the final stop, Simpson pitted for another dash of fuel, but the circuit’s fuel pump once again failed to operate, losing the team valuable time as the mechanics rallied to push the #32 car into a different fuelling bay.
Having lost the lead, Simpson re-joined in third place and managed to pick off another competitor before the line, to bring the car home in second position.
Meanwhile, in the #24 car, Dons initially fell to fourth, but the Danish driver recovered to take the race lead at the halfway mark. A clean pit stop meant Geddie cemented their ever increasing lead with consistent fast laps. Unfortunately for Geddie, a rear wishbone issue brought back them into the pits for repairs, which lost the team 40 minutes as they changed the damaged parts. A disappointing end to what was looking like an easy victory for Dons and Geddie, but a very promising first race with the Ginetta factory Team LNT.