Austria’s Red Bull Ring will provide European Le Mans Series championship contender Charlie Robertson and Ginetta-Nissan team-mate Sir Chris Hoy with a brand new challenge next weekend, 11th/12th July, when round three of the season takes place at the historic Spielberg track.
Scottish 18-year-old Charlie, who resides in Whyteleafe in Surrey, has been a standout performer in the ELMS during his maiden season in prototype sportscar racing and undoubtedly the fastest driver in the brand new LMP3 Class.
Winning the opening round of the season at Silverstone Grand Prix Circuit in April with compatriot Hoy, the Team LNT pairing had the pace to battle for a second consecutive victory last time out at Imola in Italy, but an unfortunate retirement means they will arrive in Austria third in the standings.
“It should be a mega weekend, Red Bull Ring is another track I’ve got to learn but it looks a great place with a pretty cool background too – there’s a lot of history there”, said Charlie, “It’s going to be awesome to race there for the first time, especially in the LMP3 car which should be even better now as there have been some major improvements made since Imola.”
Having qualified on LMP3 pole position for the first two rounds, Investigo and Curo-backed racer Charlie is determined to make it an unbroken hat-trick of timesheet topping qualifying performances as well as focusing on nothing short of a return to the top step of the podium.
Although there hasn’t been any ELMS race action since the Imola event in May, Charlie had the opportunity to take part in the official Le Mans 24 Hours test day at the wheel of his Ginetta-Nissan where he delivered a remarkable performance.
Lapping the Circuit de la Sarthe in France an incredible four seconds faster than any other LMP3 pilot, notably out-pacing Nissan’s LMP1 ‘works’ drivers Max Chilton, Alex Buncombe and Tsugio Matsuda, Charlie made a major impression on his maiden outing at the world-famous track.
Additionally, the BRDC SuperStar was on track last weekend at Dijon in France in the VdeV series after being drafted in to the Prime Racing Luxembourg squad to share its Ginetta LMP3 car with Jean-Pierre Lequeux and Jerome Naveaux. Taking class pole position, qualifying third fastest overall, Charlie helped the team claim class victory and he notably set the fastest lap of the race outright.
With all of that fresh in his mind, and with the knowledge a constant stream of upgrades and improvements are being applied to his car, the Scotsman says he is determined to deliver his strongest performance yet in the European Le Mans Series a week from now.
“We want to focus on bridging the gap to the P2 cars, I think the track will suit the car and I’m feeling very positive”, he added, “It was frustrating having the problem in Imola but our pace was strong again, and to be the top LMP3 in the Le Mans test was epic. It’s been a dream come true for me so far this season, I can’t wait to be back in the car next weekend and I’m definitely aiming for the win.”
Following two 90 minute practice sessions on Saturday, 11th July, qualifying for the LMP3 cars will get underway at 09.45 (local time) on Sunday, 12th July, with the 4 Hours of Red Bull Ring scheduled to commence at 13.30 (local time).
Live coverage of the race will be available online HERE with extensive highlights currently scheduled to be screened from 20.00 (UK time) on Motors TV.
Provisional 2015 European Le Mans Series LMP3 Driver Standings (after Rd2):3rd Charlie Robertson/Sir Chris Hoy, 26pts