Italian GT Championship, Round 5, Imola

37000914061_18bf1c9be0_oHey guys! I am delighted that our hard work paid off with a win in the Italian GT Championship after being so close several times this season. We’ve had some bad luck this year and should have won at Monza, were it not for a poorly timed safety car and a harsh penalty.

This weekend we were back at Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari di Imola, where we started the season so I knew the track – something that has been a challenge this year, as I don’t know all of the Italian circuits.

In first practice the car was initially running well, but we had a throttle-by-wire issue, that caused us some problems. This also happened in qualifying, costing us time and I’m sure we had the speed to be on pole.

We also struggled with this issue in race one, but it improved as my stint went on, before my team-mate had the same problem. We finished fifth but would have been much higher without the setbacks.

Audi Sport Italia worked all night to find and sort the problem, which they did, improving the car ahead of a wet second race.

Vittorio Ghirelli started the car and had a great battle with a Lamborghini, whilst also looking after the tyres, before he handed the car over to me in fifth position.

When I took over we were 20 seconds behind the lead group, but we decided to attack as the track began to dry out, and I was able to lap two or three seconds quicker than the front-runners.

With encouragement from the team, I continued to push and managed to make my way past the four cars ahead to take the lead. I then managed the tyres to the end of the race ensuring there were no mistakes.

I am very happy for the team, who have been working so hard since the start of the season and really deserve this win. It’s also great to score my first GT3 win with Audi Sport Italia, and hopefully we can take this momentum to Autodromo Vallelunga.