HANCOCK HAS UNFINISHED BUSINESS AT AUTOSPORT 1000kms
Aston Martin Racing driver Sam Hancock heads into next weekend’s Autosport 1000kms at Silverstone with a sense of unfinished business as the disappointment of retiring from June’s Le Mans 24 Hours with just 50 minutes of the race remains fresh in his mind.
Hancock was running fourth overall and first in class at the time of the retirement and is looking forward to returning to the cockpit of the Aston Martin LMP1 prototype for the first time since, at the ‘Home of British Motorsport’ which hosts the final round of the Le Mans Series.
“There was definitely a feeling of satisfaction that we’d done such a good job to be in that position with so little time remaining, but I have a much stronger sense of it being unfinished business,” admits Hancock. “We were only 50 minutes away from a dream result so I’m excited to get to Silverstone and try to pick up where we left off at Le Mans.”
Hancock will share the car next weekend with one of his Le Mans co-drivers, Juan Barazi, and will again do battle with the cream of world sportscar racing in a 47-car field which includes factory entries for Audi and Peugeot in the premier LMP1 category.
“It will be incredibly tough at the front of the pack but it’s great for the profile of the race,” said Hancock. “There’s still likely to be a gap between the diesel and petrol cars but we’ll be pushing as hard as we can. Silverstone is a fantastic circuit for this type of racing. It’s a wide track so there is space to deal with traffic and drivers love it because it’s so fast and you can really let these big, powerful cars off the leash. I haven’t driven the new ‘Arena’ layout before but I have looked at some maps and, because I’m used to racing on the ‘Club’ circuit where Brooklands is pretty much the same, there are only really a couple of new corners for me to learn, which shouldn’t be a problem.”
While Hancock admits that racing for a brand as prestigious as Aston Martin at his and the team’s home circuit is special, it’s something he won’t dwell on until after the race.
“It’s undoubtedly a very special opportunity to race an Aston Martin carrying the famous Gulf livery at my home track, but I’ll be trying not to think about it during the race weekend,” he revealed. “I prefer to put all that to one side and view it as just another race, in just another car. I’ll forget the more emotional aspect during the event, do the most professional job possible, and then reflect on it later.”