Brundle denied another Le Mans victory SUPPORTS
Martin Brundle was denied victory in the Road to Le Mans race as DC Racing’s Thomas Laurent and Alexandre Cougnaud beat the Briton and team-mate Christian England into second.
Having qualified his United Autosports Ligier JSP3 on pole, Brundle lost the lead at the start of the Le Mans 24 Hours support event despite making a strong getaway.
He appeared to catch Ginetta driver Charlie Robertson off guard as the race began, but Robertson tucked in behind the Ligier before pulling off a bold move at the Dunlop Chicane to snatch the lead.
Brundle also dropped behind James Winslow’s Graff Ligier, but returned to second a handful of laps later and gradually eased clear before handing to England.
The United Autosports Ligier should have inherited the race lead, as Lawrence Tomlinson lost the rear of the Ginetta at the Dunlop chicane on his second lap, but a spin on England’s first lap coupled with a swift pitstop and outlap from Laurent handed the DC Racing Ligier the lead.
Laurent, who was disappointed not to qualify on pole two days earlier, was not troubled from there as he stormed clear in the final half hour, eventually finishing 16.863s clear.
England recovered to second, having made his way back past Romano Ricci during the middle of his stint, ahead of John Falb.
Marcello Puglisi survived a chaotic Ferrari Challenge affair to win the Le Mans 24 Hours support race.
Puglisi started sixth, but had made his way up to fourth when the safety car was deployed at the end of lap one. He then moved up to second place when leader Bjork Grossmann was spun by Philipp Baron and, after jostling with polesitter Alberto Cola, slotted into a lead he would never lose as Cola spun on the exit of the Porsche Curves.
British driver Sam Smeeth finished in second place, with Grossmann recovering to a fine third place after a solid fight back.
Thomas Laurent/ Alexandre Cougnaud (DC Racing LigierNissan); 2 Martin Brundle/ Christian England (United Autosports Ligier-nissan) +16.863s; 3 John Falb (Graff Ligier-nissan); 4 Yann Ehrlacher/ Romano Ricci M Racing – YMR (Ligier-nissan); 5 Guy Cosmo/ Mike Hedland (United Autosports Ligier-nissan); 6 Terrence Woodward/james Swift (360 Racing LigierNissan). FL Cosmo 3m54.491s (130.01mph). P Brundle. S 18. 1 Aleksey Basov/ Victor Shaytar (AF Corse Ferrari F488); 2 Hiroshi Hamaguchi/adrian Quaife-hobbs (FFF Racing Team by ACM Mclaren 650S) +11.238s; 3 Egidio Perfetti/ Klaus Bachler (Mentos Racing Porsche 911 GT3 R); 4 Salih Yoluc/ Euan Hankey (TF Sport Aston Martin V12 Vantage GT3); 5 Thomas Flohr/ Francesco Castellacci (AF Corse Ferrari); 6 Andrew Jarman/ Devon Modell (TF Sport Aston Martin). FL Bachler 3m59.907s (127.08 mph). P Perfetti S 19.