Class podium for Hancock at Dubai 24 Hours
Aston Martin Racing Factory Driver Sam Hancock opened his 2011 season with a class podium in the Dubai 24 Hours after finishing second in the SP3 GT4A category and 15th overall in HMR's Aston Martin GT4.
Hancock, co-founder of specialist high-performance driver coaching service The Drivers Club, was invited to take part in the race by club member and HMR team owner Humaid Al Masaood and shared the car with the UAE-based driver and businessman as well as BTCC star Steven Kane and Radical racer Alex Kapadia.
HMR led the early and middle stages of the race, heading a three-way battle with the NFS Racing Lotus 2-Eleven and Valspar Donkervoort D8 GT, but the latter's more efficient fuel economy soon saw it pull into a commanding lead.
While Hancock, Kane, Kapadia and Al Masaood all drove faultless stints, a couple of unscheduled stops for a soft brake pedal and a small suspension issue, meant that the team couldn't close the gap and ultimately settled for a strong second place.
Sam Hancock: "We looked strong early on, but the Donkervoort made around seven stops fewer than us, which represents a huge amount of time. HMR might be a young team but they still held their own against strong competition, were very passionate and desperately disappointed to miss out on the win. I'd like to thank them and Humaid for inviting me, as well as for all their hard work throughout what is an extremely tough event. We can be very proud of what we've achieved this weekend. On a personal note, it was a good warm up for the new season. It never hurts to do another endurance race and the Dubai 24 Hours is always a huge challenge."
Hancock will now look forward to racing in the Le Mans Series in Jota Sport AMR's GT2-spec Aston Martin.
-source: sam hancock