Next on the calendar is what we would consider one of our favourite tracks, Donington Park. We’ve always enjoyed coming here and would almost consider it as a local track, seeing as it’s just a quick trip up the M1. After a strong showing with the new car at Thruxton, Rob and Ryan were hopeful of a good result coming in to the weekend.
Qualifying went really well and we were 7th on the grid, just 5 hundredths of a second behind Tom Mensley in the Class B leading Clio.
Heading to the grid however, Tom had an issue and we immediately gained a place before even crossing the start line. On the same lap, whilst weaving to heat the tyres, there was a sudden change in the exhaust note and it was noticeably louder. After a quick in-car assessment, Ryan made the executive decision to continue on regardless.
It had become obvious that exhaust gases were entering the cockpit and Ryan found himself scooping in some fresh air with his hand through the small gap in the window. By now, we were expecting to have received the black and orange flag for the excessive noise, let alone the fact the exhaust was probably hanging on by a thread.
The car came in for what we thought would be a normal driver change. However, as we came to a stop, a marshal came up to the car and halted our progress. He wouldn’t let us out until the exhaust was fixed and by the time we would’ve been able to fix it, the race would be over. So, unfortunately, we had to retire the car, for the 2nd time in 3 years at Donington.