6 Hours of Silverstone Podium Finish for Patrón ESM
Continuing an impressive run in 2016, Tequila Patrón ESM earned a second place finish on Sunday at the World Endurance Championship (WEC) season opening race at the 6 Hours of Silverstone. The finish marks the team’s third podium finish in three races, following record setting wins at the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona and the Twelve Hours of Sebring in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.
The team returned for a second full season in the WEC with a two car effort. Starting the event in 10th, the driver lineup for the No. 30 Nissan Ligier JS P2 consisted of Team Owner Scott Sharp, Tequila Patrón CEO Ed Brown and ESM veteran Johannes van Overbeek. Ryan Dalziel, Chris Cumming and Pipo Derani completed the team lineup in the No. 31 Nissan Ligier JS P2, leading the team qualifying effort with a 2nd place result.
Derani started the event for the No. 31, wasting no time to make a pass on Nicholas Minassian for the lead on the inside of the Brooklands corner and pull away from the field. In the first 20 minutes, the Brazilian created a 12-second gap over the competition, and shortly after, pitted to hand the wheel to Chris Cumming. Cumming had an early race spin, but recovered masterfully, and passed the car on to Dalziel for a double stint. The team lost ground when a full course caution came right after a pit stop, but the team took it in stride to still fight to the end. Derani took over for the final three stints, climbing his way through the LMP2 class. After six hours, the No. 31 Ligier finished 2nd, setting the fastest lap of the race.
Johannes van Overbeek started the 6 Hours of Silverstone in 10th position, and climbed through the field to sit 7th in the first hour. Scott Sharp took over the No. 30 Ligier next, rejoining in 10th, also climbing back up to 7th by the two hour mark. Ed Brown turned his first laps of the race near the halfway point, and despite fighting with loose belts during his stint, he pressed on to bring the car in clean back to van Overbeek. In the car until the end, van Overbeek finished the grueling 6 hours in the top ten, earning a 9th place result.
European fans will be able to watch the race replay on Motors TV April 19-24. US fans can check FOX Sports web and local listings for replay and highlight information. The FIA WEC smartphone app will also make the race replay available for three weeks following the event.
The 2016 World Endurance Championship resumes in two weeks at the 6 Hours of Spa- Francorchamps, May 7th. The race will be broadcasted on the FOX Sports GO app as well as FOX Sports 1 and FOX Sports 2. Check local listings or www.fiawec.com for more information.
The 6 Hours of Silverstone was a very successful start to the 2016 WEC season for Tequila Patrón ESM. It was a great effort by everyone on the team in very trying conditions throughout the weekend. Congratulations to Pipo, Ryan and Chris on a fantastic 2nd place finish! They earned some great points, and what an awesome way to start the season! Ed, Johannes and I persevered through a number of challenges today and we got to the end! We look forward to taking a big step forward in Spa! I just want to thank all team members for their efforts over the past 90 days to get the team prepared at the high level they are performing at. Philippe Dumas and the engineers have come out of the gate with a big bang!
It was a rough day for the No. 30. I didn’t get strapped in all the way for my stint, so I never felt really comfortable out there. However, great result for the sister car!
Johannes van Overbeek
First off, congrats to the 31 on their podium. It’s a great start to the year for the team and Patrón. The 30 car’s race was challenging. We missed an opportunity under the yellow and safety car period that set us back a lap and a half. As usual, it was great working with Ed and Scott. Looking forward and ahead to Spa.
This was a great first race for Tequila Patrón on our WEC campaign. Obviously we came in with a lot of momentum from the Daytona and Sebring results, so we wanted to come away with some solid points for the championship. I have a really great feeling about our 2016 season and I’m proud to get a strong 2nd place finish at my home venue. We had some bad luck early in the race with the full course caution, but we caught a break later with the safety car, so all in all, I think we got the result we deserved, but we didn’t quite have enough to top the No. 43 car. On to Spa.
It is a good way to start the year for us. It was a tough race but we know there is much more to come from Spa onward. Ryan, Chris and myself have actually had very little track time together as a squad, so to come away with 18 points is satisfying. The Tequila Patrón ESM team was again excellent and I have to thank everyone for their efforts this weekend. The combination of the Tequila Patrón ESM guys and Oak Racing under Philippe’s management has proved to be a very effective partnership.
This was a very good result for our first race. Ryan and Pipo drove great stints and the team was fantastic with pit stops and strategy. What’s encouraging is that we know we can perform even better going forward.