Kerr Captures Le Mans Podium in 24 Hour Race Debut
A1 Team Great Britain's Robbie Kerr capped his debut at the famed Le Mans 24 Hour Race in France at the weekend, 16th-17th June, with a second place LMP2 class finish. The British racer shared the runner-up podium placing after a marathon 24 hours of action at the 8.4-mile French circuit with his #33 Barazi-Epsilon team-mates, Mexico's Adrian Fernandez and Japan's Haruki Kurosawa.
Making just his second-career sports car start, Burbage's Kerr was a pace-setter on first strapping in behind the wheel of his LMP2 Zytek O7S/2. Having watched Fernandez start the race from class pole, followed by a stint by Kurosawa, Kerr was finally unleashed, reclaiming the LMP2 lead before handing back to Fernandez as the hours ticked by.
While the #33 car proved to be the class of the field in terms of outright pace, a series of minor problems, including fuel pressure issues and a right rear wheel bearing failure, saw the car's position yo-yo up and down the running order as the race progressed. Despite this Robbie's first experience of night-racing proved to be a positive as he reveled in the conditions, turning in double-stints with ease to keep a podium finish well in-sight as Sunday morning arrived, setting fastest laps along the way.
In one of the most grueling races of recent years, with just 29 of 54 cars taking the chequered flag on Sunday afternoon amidst treacherous track conditions due to torrential rain, Robbie subsequently celebrated a podium debut at Le Mans alongside his team-mates Fernandez and Kurosawa, the trio taking second in LMP2 class behind the winning entry of Binnie Motorsports in the Zytek-powered Lola B05/40.
"I really enjoyed the race," commented Kerr. "I gained a ton of experience which I'd love to put to good use by coming back here and building on what I learned and hopefully going one step further on the podium. The team performed well, we showed we had the speed to win the race. I was happy with my stints in the car; it's just a shame that we had some of the issues that we had as they ultimately prevented us from taking the victory! I enjoy racing sports car so hopefully I'll get another competitive opportunity soon so I can get back out there and go for wins!"
The race was won outright by the LMP1 class line-up of Marco Werner, Frank Biela and Emanuele Pirro in the all-conquering Audi R10 TDi.
Next up for Robbie is the Goodwood Festival of Speed, Friday 22nd -- Sunday 24th June.