#48 Murphy Prototypes Oreca 03 Nissan: Warren Hughes, Jody Firth, Brendon Hartley
#48 Murphy Prototypes Oreca 03 Nissan: Warren Hughes, Jody Firth, Brendon Hartley

Photo by: Ed Fahey

It was a frustrating day at the office for Murphy Prototypes who took the chequered flag at the 6 Hours of Silverstone in 9th position in class (16th overall). A series of factors, in and out of the team’s control, and uncharacteristic lack of pace contributed to an ultimately disappointing race result.

Brendon Hartley (1st & 4th stint): “It was a difficult day. I had to take evasive action following the incident at turn one at race start which lost me 10 places. Our first stint was then hampered as I fought with traffic and then in stint two, when we had got up to P6, we suddenly lost a front wheel. We lost a lot of time as I nursed the car back to pits, but we got the car back out with Warren, unsure of any damage.

We tried something different with the tyres on the last stint which did not work, so we are all scratching our heads a bit. We do not know why we were lacking pace today, especially as we were only 0.3 seconds off pole in qualifying. You do need bad days to learn from and I am sure that we shall be strong again at Petit Le Mans.”

Warren Hughes (2nd stint): “It was a tougher day than we were all expecting. It seemed that we had good pace in warm up prior to the race; may be the warmer conditions later on contributed to us losing a bit of balance and was detrimental to our tyre life. The first stints were reasonable, but the double stints seemed to be hampered by the tyres.

There is clearly a lot to learn from today, but this result is unusual for us because at all the races we have competed in so far we have been fighting for or been in the lead at some stage. So it was a bit of an anomaly for us to struggle as we did today, but I am sure that we will come back stronger.”

Jody Firth (3rd stint): “Looking back I was very pleased with my average lap time in my double stint. All three of our fastest laps were in the 1:52’s, which shows consistency from all our drivers. I had the safety car for part of my second stint and then 10 laps from the end the car became very difficult to manage as tyres dropped off dramatically.

The car’s characteristics were not what we had experienced in practice, which is slightly puzzling and we do not know where our race pace went. Even though we did not deserve to be in the top three today on pace alone, it is frustrating that we experienced so many other problems - some were our fault; some were out of our control.

Everyone in the team has worked very hard, but it was just not to be this weekend. I am sure that we shall be back at the sharp end, where we belong, for Petit Le Mans.”