Liddell’s Adventures With G&W & GS
Robin Liddell’s plan last week was to test the GS Motorsport Honda NSX at the Nurburgring on Wednesday, fly back to the UK, then cross the Atlantic on Thursday, ready for Mont Tremblant on Friday, with the G&W #77 Porsche (partnering car owner Mark Greenberg and Spencer Pumpelly).

dailysportscar.comThe best laid plans etc… The Honda NSX had been suffering drive train woes when it ran at the Nurburgring, in the early stages of the recent VLN meeting. Those continued into a test at Spa early last week, but revised parts were ordered ready for a second test at the ‘Ring on Wednesday.

“Unfortunately, the development parts didn’t arrive until 5am on Wednesday, which was too late for me to make plans to get to Germany and back, before flying to Canada,” explains Liddell.

So Plan B was to fly straight to Canada on Thursday, ready for a first look at the scenic Mont Tremblant circuit on Friday.

“But Mark Greenberg had quite a big accident on Thursday, ripping three corners off the car, so the team spent Friday rebuilding it. It was touch and go whether we could take part in the rest of the meeting - but the team got it all back together. We had Tony Dowe engineering the car: what a top man. I really enjoyed working with him.

“With all the dramas with the car, we hadn’t nominated a driver for qualifying. Spencer was going to qualify the Porsche, but at that stage, I’d done just two flying laps (plus an out and an in), and of course had never seen the track before. The plan was changed so that I set the time, but really I was just getting some miles in at Mont Tremblant, and seeing how we could change the set-up. Spencer was down to start, and we had to start from the back anyway, although I was reasonably pleased with eighth fastest time in GT.

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Spencer drove for two hours, I drove for about three (about to start a three hour session in the car, above), and Mark got in for the last 50 minutes. We were punished for making all our stops except one under green, but we had got the car up to third at one point, then dropped to fourth with a puncture.

About four and three quarter hours into the race, just after a yellow, I had a fantastic scrap with Mike Fitzgerald, Joao Barbosa, Ian James and the #22 BMW. The front bodywork was flapping a little at that point: one of the Rileys had passed me, then immediately pulled in front – and backed off when he saw a yellow flag. He can’t have realised how close I was, and I hit him up the back, but it was only loose bodywork, no radiator damage. I saw Fitzgerald and Barbosa exchange places a couple of times behind me, but that’s where they stayed until my in lap for fuel.

dailysportscar.com“I’ve got to tell you, it’s great racing. The track is fantastic, a little like Oulton Park and the Brands GP circuit – but there’s no bridge or tunnel to get to the hospitality area on the inside. The crowd was only so-so, but I thoroughly enjoyed the racing: there were plenty of people to race with, all lapping within half a second.”

Next stop for the Scot will be another great circuit – the Nordschleife, for the 24 Hours of the Nurburgring.

“They tell me they’ve cured the drivetrain issue on the NSX. They’d raised the ride height for the ‘Ring, but that was putting a strain on the driveshafts, and it was popping the seals on the inner end. The car ran very well last Wednesday.”

The images are of the NSX, just before its test began last Wednesday.

 

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