SO NEAR yet so far summed up Scots driver Jonny Adam’s latest race in the World Endurance Championship aboard his Aston Martin Vantage GTE.
Taking on the heat of the 8 Hours of Bahrain, Jonny and his TF Sport team-mates Salih Yoluc and Charlie Eastwood were leading the LMGTE Am class of the championship and looked set to extend their lead.
Even carrying a 45kg success ballast for their two previous wins, the team put the car seventh on the grid for the start last weekend. The race progressed well and Fife flyer Jonny had put the Aston into a potential podium place when he handed over to Eastwood.
However, the car developed a fuel problem and spent a long time in the pits, where the crew discovered a broken fuel rail that couldn’t be replaced in the time remaining. So it was decided that Jonny should try to nurse the machine to the finish, but it had to retire with further fuelling issues.
The frustrating end to the race for the TF Sport outfit means a three-point advantage has turned into a deficit of 15 points. Afterwards, Jonny said: “The team has done a mega job all year and it’s unfortunate we couldn’t wrap it up on a high.
“We worked on the car throughout the four hours of practice and it felt really good, despite the extra weight.
“It’s a shame it didn’t go our way in the race, but 15 points adrift with half of the season to go means we’re still in contention going into the next round in February at the Circuit of the Americas in Texas.”
In Malaysia, it looked like Gordon Shedden was finally enjoying some better luck in the World Touring Car Cup (WTCR). Although he started the first race in 22nd in his Leopard Racing Audi RS3 LMS, he put in a typically charging drive to finish in 15th and earn points for the championship.
However, the tough Sepang track and torrential rain saw Flash finish two laps down in the second race and he spun into the gravel in the third and final race. With the WRT team that has run Gordon’s Audi RS3 in the WTCR now pulling out of the series, it leaves him without a drive for next year at the moment.
Closer to home, Scots rally driver Gordon Morrison and Road Record freelance photographer Eddie Kelly enjoyed a podium finish at the Christmas Stages Rally at Croft.
The pair came home a convincing third in their Ford Fiesta R5 at the North Yorkshire venue in only the second outing for Kelly as a co-pilot. And the result meant they claimed the top spot in what was round one of the 2020 North of England Tarmacadam Rally Championship.
Another Scots driver with good news is Ryan Dalziel. Following his announcement that he will compete in an LMP2 car in 2020, he also confirmed he will continue in the GT World Challenge America series.
Razzle Dazzle will be driving a Mercedes-AMG GT3 Evo for DXDT Racing. Ryan said: “It feels great to have two solid programmes for 2020. This last year has not been very successful, so I’m looking forward to getting back on the podium and winning a championship or two.”
There’s no major motorsport action in Scotland this weekend, but the Lanarkshire Motorcycle Club is running its Open to Scotland Charity Trial on Boxing Day. It takes place at Crieff Hydro, Perthshire, and starts from midday.