Pittard BritcarDavid Pittard has kicked started his Britcar campaign with a stunning second place finish in his first ever endurance race at Donington Park.

Despite the team only acquiring the car a week prior and the drivers not even having seen it until the Friday night, David was confident that he could reward the Strata 21 team with a solid performance at Donington circuit.

As qualifying approached it was decided that team mate Adam Sharpe, being the more experienced of the driver line up, would qualify first and perform all the system checks on the newly acquired Porsche 911 GT3 Cup. After confirming all was OK, Sharpe preceded to set a solid ‘banker lap’ before coming in to the pits to hand over to David’s second team mate Tom Jones to complete his 15mins. As the session drew to a close it was the turn of Pittard, who took to the car like a duck to water, and preceded to set a time that qualified him an incredible 2nd, just 0.1 second of pole position.

“It was awesome to get back into the Porsche again after such a long time out of the seat. I had a massive grin on my face from the moment I pulled away – I’d forgotten how fast that car is!”

“Once I got comfortable with the car I decided to go for a lap, and managed to put in a time good enough to qualify the car in 2nd in class, just 0.1 second of pole. It was a really positive start to the day!”

With qualifying completed it was now down to David to familiarise himself with endurance race strategy and driver change procedures, something he had yet to experience in his short race career to date.

“During the break between qualifying and the race we sat down and devised our strategy. From this we decided to stick with the same driver order as we did for qualifying, and then set about practicing pit stop driver changes, which was another new feature to some of us in the team!”

As the race start time approached the track remained dry, and as the green lights went out team mate Adam Sharpe proceeded to take the class lead as the pack headed into turn 1, setting the Strata21 team up with the perfect start to their Britcar campaign.

“Adam started the race really well immediately getting into the class lead as well a gaining 3 places over all, putting a gap between himself and second place which really helped when the first safety car came out”

After a good stint and with the race timer counting down, the car was called in to the pits from the lead and it was the turn of Morgan racer Tom Jones to take to the track, just as the weather looked to be turning for the worse.

“Tom had a tough stint as it showered a lot throughout, coupled with a few safety cars which also would have upset his flow. However he drove solidly in very tricky conditions, which at times looked  almost bad enough for wets!“

As Tom completed his stint and made his way to the pits from a solid second place it was finally David’s turn to face the tough conditions, and following a excellent driver change and quick fuel he headed out onto the track to commence his first ever Britcar race.

“We decided to triple stint the tires as the damp conditions hadn’t taken much life out of them. When I started my stint it was very wet still so after the adrenalin of jumping in the car quickly and getting out on track asap, it was a case of keeping it calm and getting use to the car in the wet conditions”

“I got my head down knowing that we had pitted in second place and the Lotus we were racing only had to make 1 stop, however we had a good race and weren’t too far behind.”

Driving with immense maturity and good pace, there was still one last new experience to come for the young Brunel University student when again the safety car was called out, bunching the pack back up.

“My stint was broken up by another Safety car. There was some confusion when they waved me and a few other cars past to make up a lap which I thought at the time was a good thing, however the leader pitted which meant everyone was waved past, levelling things out again”

“However when the leader joined the track I was 3rd in the safety car train, the 2 cars in front were waved past on the back straight and then I was waved past on the start finish straight, I tried to catch the back of the safety car train up again before the pack was released however I couldn’t catch up in time”

With the safety car now in and the cars again under race conditions, Pittard was unable to claw back any of the time lost to the lead Lotus. Undeterred however, he set about reeling in the cars in front in a bid to put pressure on the leader.

“I continued to push throughout the last 10mins catching and passing a class 3 car for 8th overall. Steve then informed me that I was a long way from the car ahead and pulling away from the car behind, so we decided to settle in to a good rhythm and bring the car home in second.”

As the chequered flag dropped Pittard brought the Strata21 Porsche home in a fantastic second place on both the cars and importantly David’s Britcar debut.

“As I crossed the line I was extremely pleased! It’s a great result to build on, and I can’t wait until Snetterton 300 on the 12th of May, a massive thanks to Strata21, Strata Motorsport, My Dad, Podium PR, and everyone that supported me in my first weekend!”