Despite this not being a professional racing weekend it was a chance for me to get some track time around Spa for the up and coming Fun Cup 25 hour race that I’m to compete in.
With both myself and my father racing we took two Morgans, one with a 2.5L Duratec engine and the other with a 3.5L V8. The both of the cars were entered into the Morgan Challenge series and the V8 into the Swinging sixties as well which I would share with my father in the race.
The weekend began on the Friday where qualifying took place for both races. In the Duratec powered car I was able to put the car 2nd on the grid for the race ahead of the 55 car grid with many different variations of Morgans on track. Qualifying was a struggle due to a mysterious oil leak that entered the foot well, however I was pleased with the cars performance since I was 12mph slower down the straights than the car ahead of me so I wasn’t expecting pole.
When it came to the qualifying for the V8 car in the swinging sixties I drove the car first unsure of where we would end up against the competition. With some far faster machinery in the race I went out and out in three good laps on high fuel before handing over to my father so that he could qualify as well. Once the session was over we were on pole by 2.9 seconds with my fastest lap being taken away due to track limits, which would have put us 3.5 seconds ahead of the competition.
Saturday came and the weather was glorious sunshine after the rain the night before. The Morgan Challenge race was first in the Duratec powered car; of the start I kept level with the leader but once we got to the straights I had no chance and second was what I would have to settle with in the mean time. However with a safety car on lap 1 due to a heavy crash, and the track having very little grip due to the rubber being washed away I thought I might be able to keep up with the leader. This wasn’t the case and a solid second place was where I would remain until the end.
For the swinging sixties race I was feeling very confident after my qualifying performance in the V8 car. The race got off to a fantastic start as I held the lead right up to the pit stop window pulling out a 43 second lead before I handed over to my father. Considering we were up against 5.7L 0 7L Camaros I was pleased to have been this far ahead. Once my father was in the car we had lost a lot of time in the pits due to a sticky seat belt, however we came back out in the lead where he put in some good laps until 1 lap from the end of the race when it was red flagged. This meant that we had won by a good 12 seconds which was a fantastic feeling to win with my father at the greatest track in the world.
Sunday began with another Swinging Sixties race in the V8 where we started from pole position again. This time the race wasn’t as easy as before with the very powerful Camaros starting next to me. Off the line both Camaros sped ahead of me and began to pull away, however a safety car came out immediately allowing me to close the gap. Once the safety car came in the Camaros pulled away, and by this time I didn’t think I could catch them. Fortunately I caught them very quickly in the corners and passed both of them after the safety car restart and pulled out a 5 second gap before the pit stop. Even though our pit stop was 14 seconds quicker than the day before it wasn’t quick enough and we lost the race lead. Dad put in all he could to catch the leader but with lots of slower traffic to pass he was unable to regain the lead, so we finished 2nd overall.
The weekend was fantastic fun and the results showed the speed of the cars and how I was able to progress during the races. Next time out will be back at Spa for the Fun Cup 25 hour race with Team tiger.