Several British American Racing team members turned up at the annual Brands Hatch event this weekend to help their engineering colleague David Lloyd in his bid for Formula Ford glory. French Formula 1 star Olivier Panis and his race engineer...
Several British American Racing team members turned up at the annual Brands Hatch event this weekend to help their engineering colleague David Lloyd in his bid for Formula Ford glory.
French Formula 1 star Olivier Panis and his race engineer David Lloyd were ‘trading places’ in a post-season role reversal that saw David at the wheel of a Vector Racing-prepared Formula Ford 1800 and Olivier taking on the spanner work as his race engineer.
The whole BAR support team entered into the spirit of the occasion and everyone tried out different responsibilities, swapping roles with colleagues in an attempt to see a race weekend from a different perspective. In reality though it was tougher than expected. David had a big shunt in pre-race practice on Tuesday, forcing the team into overdrive as they battled to get the car back into race trim for the bi Friday qualifying saw a cautious start to the event with David placed 14th on the grid for the first heat on Saturday. After a good run though, he improved three places to 11th - enough for qualification to the semi-final on the following day.
On Sunday the heavens opened and the competitors, along with the many spectators, had to endure torrential rain which yielded zero visibility on the track and the most appalling race conditions.
David started 21st on the grid in his semi-final, but suffered a spin that put him to the back of the field. Luckily for David, two other collisions forced a restart, restoring him to his original grid position. At the second time of asking, he worked his way through the field to finish a very credible 9th with a confirmed seat in the final.
So a full grid of 28 brave starters lined up for the showcase event with the BAR entry in 18th place. But with no break in the weather and still no on-track visibility, David’s luck finally ran out when a shunt from the rear curtailed his race just a few laps from the flag.
Officially classified as a DNF with only two laps remaining on a sodden festival weekend, the jubilant and rain-drenched BAR team celebrated a fantastic effort from this retired ex-racer who had not competed for over 10 years.
The overall winner was South African driver Alan van der Merwe and the BAR team offers its congratulations to him and all the other competitors who endured the October downpour.