2016 has been my toughest season to date. I have faced massive issues with car reliability and inherent issues which have put the team and I at a big disadvantage against our competitors. However, we all knew it would be a mountain to climb going into this season.
The pre-season test in Jerez and Valencia showed some promise with my pace, however, reliability issues were clear from the start. The resulting impact on track time was a big problem for my co-driver David and I. GT3 cars are complex and the ABS brakes take some getting used to. Nevertheless, the lack of track time and the might of our competitors, with the likes of Bentley, Aston and Ferrari, has really developed my ability to jump into a car, get down to a lap time straight away and provide the correct feedback. As a result, I now feel a more complete driver than ever.
There were some positives to take from my season. I was able to lead a race on merit after taking over the car in 14th position during a wet race at Silverstone. The wet is always a good leveller and I was satisfied with my stint. I also had some strong qualifying sessions and consistently competitive race pace which put more pressure on the factory driver, Mike Simpson, than any teammate had done before me.
The real positive for me has come after the season ended. I had the opportunity to test a front running BTCC car. This test went extremely well. Consequently I have an opportunity to be on the BTCC grid in 2017 which would be a fantastic experience. As always, I am very keen to pursue any opportunity, in GT cars or anything else for that matter. Regardless of this seasons results, I know that in the car I can deliver and my confidence is unaffected. The future shows some promise and although I feel sportscar racing in the UK is going through a transitional phase, I have absolute confidence I will be a grid somewhere in 2017!
Thanks as always goes to my loyal sponsors, Duo plc and Henderson Insurance Brokers.