The long-term partnership between Tony Wells, Colin Noble and Nielsen Racing has seen plenty of success over the years in various categories, but Sunday (24 October 2021) at the season finale at Portimao saw them crowned Champions together as they secured the Michelin Le Mans Cup title.
Having taken the runner-up position together in 2017 and third position in 2019, the pairing took the title by four points from Cool Racing’s Matt Bell and Maurice Smith, but much of the hard work that resulted in the championship victory had already been completed over the previous six rounds to give them an 11-point advantage heading into the Portuguese race weekend.
Three podiums in the first four rounds in their #7 Ligier JS P320, including Paul Ricard and the Road to Le Mans victories, gave them great momentum to the campaign. A strong showing at Spa-Francorchamps then gave them the all-important cushion heading to the last race of the season.
Tenth position was the result, having made a race tactical error in not switching drivers under the full course yellow. Ultimately, however, the team and drivers were able to go on to celebrate their 2021 Le Mans Cup success, adding to their Asian Le Mans Series title from 2020 with the Rockingham-based team.
“Throughout the race, it could have been anyone us of us – Alexander or Maurice – but we’re relieved and delighted to win the championship by a few points and after being in the top three so many times, it’s really nice to finally do it!
“The race for me was pretty straightforward. I made a good start and kept out of trouble and then made up a couple of places. I then drove at 90 to 95 percent the whole time. A couple of people came up from behind and I opted to just to let them pass as it was so important to keep it all clean for the championship.”
“It’s a great result for Nielsen Racing after being so close so many times before. We were fortunate there at the end, we made it particularly tricky for ourselves. Tony had plenty of pace and we were comfortable and then the pitstop turned it on its head and then we had to scramble back there in the end.
“We played it too safe in trying to have a straight-forward race and also knowing which drivers we really had to compete against. But the way it worked out meant that they nearly got a lap on us and so it was quite an uphill battle for the last 40-minutes of the race.”
Source. BAM Motorsports