BEN SECURES FIRST 24 HOUR RACE DEAL 10/9/08

After a disapponting 2008 season thus far Ben will be reunited with the team that he helped claim the 2007 British GT Team Championship, Barwell, for his first attempt at the Britcar 24 hour race at Silverstone next weekend (20/21 September).

With Barwell progressing to the American Le Mans Series for 2008 and Ben firmly looking at a second assault on the British GT drivers title a move to the Team Modena Lamborghini has been thwarted by misfortune. Continuous engine troubles coupled with rampant backmarkers has left Ben and team mate Guy Harrington languishing at the bottom of the drivers table with the final two hour race at Donington in October their only chance to rescue their season.

With discussions over the last couple of months to run with Barwell in the upcoming Britcar 24 hour race there may be another opportunity to return to the winning ways of the previous 3 years. Ben clearly fitted in well with the Barwell team as he secured 2 race wins with them in the DBRS9 last year so maybe the combination will bring a similar result. However, this challenge will be a new experience for Ben who's longest race to date is 2 hours. The 24 hour endurance event will not just require consistant quick driving but also intelligence and reliability from the team and car. With Barwell's experiences in the American Le Mans Series this year and with many of the team being part of the class winning outfit from 2006 there should be some good ingredients in the pot.

"I am really looking forward to this challenge as I enjoyed working with Barwell last year and obviously had success with them." said Ben. "When we first staring to talk about the option I was excited to think that we could put together a good package. Although the general idea of entering is to gain some valuable 24 hour race experience and also have some end of season fun the team is made up of drivers and crew who won't just be there to make up the numbers - if everything comes together right then we will be looking for a strong result."

Ben's regular team mate, Guy Harrington, will be alongside to maintain the strong partnership they have created over the past 2 seasons as well as Barwell owner Mark Lemmer returning to the drivers seat with experienced crew member, Mikey Brown, swapping spanner for steering wheel for the second time this season.

"I am really looking forward to working with Mark (Lemmer) again as I developed well with him last year. Having him in the car will be a real bonus to the team as he knows it better than any of us." Ben commented when the lineup was announced. "Mikey is also a good pedaller and Guy of course I know can perform at the highest level so we should have a consistantly quick car out there. Not only that but we all get along well too and whilst trying to get the most out of the car we will also have a good laugh which is important."

One of the biggest changes for Ben to get to grips with for the race is the switch from rear wheel drive to front as the team will not be entering their GT3 DBRS9 but instead Mikey Browns Honda Integra in the 2 litre class. With 2 hours testing on Thursday and 3 hours qualifying on Friday Ben should be fully adjusted by the time the race starts at 1630hrs on Saturday afternoon.

 

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