In an incident-packed final round of the 2019 Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup in Barcelona, Belfast born endurance racing driver Charlie Eastwood drove a brilliantly controlled race to finish second in class to secure the Pro-Am Cup team and driver championships for Oman Racing with TF Sport.
Driving the #97 Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT3 alongside teammates Salih Yoluc and Ahmad Al Harthy, Eastwood took control of the final stint and avoided contact with a number of incidents to cross the line with the all-important championship-winning points.
Charlie Eastwood describes winning the championship: “I am so pleased to be able to leave Barcelona with the Pro-Am Cup championship title. Celebrating the title with the team is very special, they have worked extremely hard all season to provide a competitive car that can challenge for class victories. In today’s race, the Aston Martin showed great pace, I was able to push the car and lap consistently faster than the Audi which finished just ahead.”
Starting his stint with one-hour remaining, Charlie joined the race under the safety car. Once the race went green the #97 moved through the field before championship rivals, Ram Racing crashed out of title contention. This incident meant Charlie had the task of bringing the car home in the podium places to celebrate a much-deserved championship title.
The Aston Martin driver explains the challenges of the race: “After the first two hours of the three-hour race was largely under safety car conditions I knew that staying out of trouble was paramount. We had the pace to finish in the top three but to finish 14th overall in the race was largely down to our aim of being consistent and avoiding collisions.”
In the hands of Charlie, the Aston Martin showed scintillating pace setting the team’s fastest lap time with a 1min 48.308 on lap 66. In a race filled with crashes and collisions, Charlie showed composure and raw talent to consistently set sub 1min 49sec times.
Charlie’s next race is the 6 Hours of Fuji, the second round of the 2019-20 FIA World Endurance Championship on 6 October.