After a late night deal and a through the night engine change the MJC Ferrari is likely to take its place on the British Endurance Championship despite a “total engine failure” in qualifying yesterday.
The team – defending champions – have been plagued by problems throughout the weekend. An electrical problem in testing on Friday was followed by a driveshaft problem that kept them out of the early running. When the car did make it onto the track it managed only ten laps before, with Keith Robinson at the wheel, the engine expired exiting Coppice.
However, a deal has been struck with Dutch Supercar Challenge squad VEKA Racing. The team runs a Ferrari F430 GT2 in the championship – making its only visit to Britain this year for the Donington event – and their spare engine was an exact match for the unit in the back of MJC's 430 GTC.
“There are only four of these engines in the world,” MJC driver Keith Robinson said. One just happened to be in support paddock.
Negotiations were completed late Saturday night, team owner Witt Gamski on the telephone. The team then worked through the night to connect the engine and when TCF spoke to Robinson shortly after nine o'clock this (Sunday) morning the car was likely to be fired up soon.
If successful the car should be able to take the eighth place on the grid for the four hour race. Regular drivers Gamski and Robinson will be joined by John Gaw – reforming three-quarters on the Britcar 24 Hour winning team from last year – as the MJC crew attempt to score their second overall win of 2011.