Team Bullrun started their 2012 campaign in the British Endurance Championship (BEC) off with maximum points and a class podium in their first race in their Lotus Evora.
Drivers Richard Adams, David Green and Martin Byford dived into the unknown for the three hour event on the Silverstone GP circuit, as former BTCC driver Byford told The Checkered Flag after qualifying.
“We're still very new to the car,” said the Essex-based driver, “We haven't had anywhere near the running we wanted before we get to race one, so we're in at the deep end with the car a little bit. That's as fast as we've been with it and we're lowly make changes to the car every time we drive it and it's coming so for us it's a great start to the weekend.”
“The problem we've had is the testing we have had has been very, very broken up with short sessions at circuits with red flags so none of us has had more than about eight consecutive laps in the car so we're all very fresh to it all which isn't going to help today. We're learning about the car quite quickly, at the moment the car is 90% of where we want it to be, the rest is fine tuning and tweeking.”
Despite those doubts the Evora ran faultlessly throughout much of the race, Byford taking the car to the Class Three lead and overall podium in his stint during the final hour. However, a puncture forced him into the pits late on, the unscheduled pitstop dropping them behind a pair of invitation entries that bumped them down to the third step of the class podium.
However, with the invitees not eligible for championship points maximum points went to Bullrun as they finished comfortably ahead of their nearest class rivals.
“We always knew that the combination of the new Evora and new pit crew we have put together this year had the potential to be very competitive, but with only limited pre-season testing under our belt, we were unsure how well we would run at this stage,” said Adams, echoing Byford's earlier words.
“The change in the points system, winning time penalties and mandatory pit stop lengths this year has also added extra factors to be considered when deciding our race strategy for each round – perversely it is not always in your best interests to win each round outright as time penalties accumulate and are carried forward throughout the season! There is still a lot of work to do, but we are obviously delighted with both the car and the team this weekend.”
The British Endurance Championship next visits Donington Park on April 21 for another three hour event.