The Team ABBA with Rollcentre Racing BMW M3 V8 (#246, Richard Roberts/Charles Lamb/Martin Short/Richard Neary) has won the Hankook 24H SILVERSTONE. The English team went from last to first after not having been able to set a qualifying time due to a broken driveshaft. After 512 laps on the 5.980 kilometres long Grand Prix circuit and a total distance of 3,061 kilometres, Richard Roberts drove the SP-Touring car over the finish line. Three laps down on the winners, the Red Camel-Jordans.nl Seat Leon Cup Racer (#303, Rik Breukers/Ivo Breukers/Bert de Heus) finished in second place. With the Memac Ogilvy Duel Racing Seat Leon Cup Racer (#1, Ramzi Moutran/Nabil Moutran/Sami Moutran/Phil Quaife), a further TCR-spec Seat completed the podium in third spot, two laps down on their brand mates. The debut of the Touring Car Endurance Series (TCES) powered by Hankook revealed balanced battles between different car concepts. The winners of all the six classes finished in the top ten positions.
The Team ABBA with Rollcentre Racing BMW went into the lead on Sunday morning, when the Team Bleekemolen Seat Leon Cup Racer (#127, Sebastiaan Bleekemolen/Melvin de Groot/Pim van Riet/Dennis de Borst) retired. The Dutch squad had led through the rainy night for 15 hours at a stretch. When the sunshine had come back and the track had dried, the Seat suffered an engine failure.
The A3 class winner reached fourth position overall. The Team Altran Peugeot 208 GTi (#208, Guillaume Roman/Thierry Blaise/Stéphane Ventaja/Bradley Philpot/Sarah Bovy) finished three positions ahead of the A3 runners-up. The Danish Scangrip Racing BMW E92 335i (#335, Niels Borum/Maurice O’Reilley/Frederik Nymark/Morten Dons) went into seventh place overall.
The quickest Diesel car realised the fifth position in total. The Belgian RECY RACING TEAM BMW 120D (#194, Jan de Vocht/Johan van Loo/Wim Meulders/Thomas Piessens/Erik Crabbe) did four pit stops less than the overall winner and clearly won the D1 class.
In sixth overall, the JJ Motorsport BMW M235i Racing Cup car (#154, Mark Lemmer/Timur Sardarov/Richard Abra/Mark Poole) kept control of the CUP1 class, finishing 13 laps ahead of the DUWO Racing BMW (#235, Jean-Marie Dumont/Alexander W. Wetzlich/Philip Harris/Chris Wilson/Adrian Watt).
The A2 class saw a breathtaking finish. The Modena Motorsports Renault Clio Cup III (#216, Wayne Shen/Francis Tjia/John Shen) took over the lead in the last 30 minutes and beat the presenza.eu Racing Team Renault Clio Cup IV (#212, Tim Söderhamn/Niels Nyboe/Mads Pedersen/Ole Klitgaard/Christian Rytter) with the tiny margin of 0,8 seconds after 24 hours. The Team K-Rejser Peugeot RCZ (#171, Jacob Kristensen/Jan Engelbrecht/Thomas Sørensen/Jens Mølgaard) began to struggle on Saturday evening after leading the A2 class in the beginning. The Danish Peugeot finally was one of the last cars to finish in 30th place.
The JR Motorsport BMW E90 M3 (#102, Martin Lanting/Bob Herber/Steven Liquorish/Christoph Ulrich), that fought in the leading group at early stages, finally came into ninth place. Another leader of the starting period, the Diesel-powered Saxon Motorsport BMW 135D GTR (#117, Nick Barrow/David Robinson/Clint Bardwell/Neil Primrose) retired one and a half hours before the finish. Four of the seven started TCR cars neither overcame the distance.
The 24 hour race at Silverstone was launched in 2005. The 2016 edition was firstly held by Creventic and covered touring cars instead of GTs for the first time. Back in the sports car days, Rollcentre Racing won the debut event in a Mosler. Back then, Martin Short was already part of the winning crew. The Briton now scored his second victory at the 24 hour race at Silverstone.
The upcoming round of the 24H SERIES powered by Hankook, held at Circuit Park Zandvoort on 06/07 May, will again cover touring cars as well as the GT cars. Next round of the TCES powered by Hankook will be the Hankook 24H SLOVAKIA RING, held from 14 to 16 June. More information about the Touring Car Endurance Series powered by Hankook can be found at http://www.touringcarenduranceseries.com and http://www.24hseries.com..
Source. Creventic/Photos John Patterson