Image Credit Kelvin Pope / SportsCarGlobal.

We spoke with Jonathan Coleman (JC) before the race, about his career, passion and aspirations for 2016 with the Team S024! by Lombard Racing and it looks like some SportsCarGlobal luck may have rubbed off, as we got to speak with a sweet smelling Jono after the podium celebrations on Saturday.

SCG – You smell of champagne, that must be a good thing? You must be over the moon to coin a phrase?

JC – Yes, definitely  at the start I thought its deja-vu all over again! The initial start I had was really good, I could see 5th or 6th then there was the spinner in front of me, and I thought not again, not again, not again…  We decided I should do the start and a single stint, allowing Vincent & Olivier to do double up. There was consideration of me doing the qualifying, but given the prevailing weather at the time settled on Vincent doing it, but he was hampered by the tyre pressures which put us down from 12th.

I’ve got a good feeling about the team, but I did not expect to get 3rd place at the first round! Once the first corner was out the way our pace was good against the others, and we got a good clean error-free run to the flag.  We knew it could get a bit crazy so the strategy was to stay out of trouble and no risks.

SCG – It looked to be very busy out there with 40-plus cars?

JC – To be fair by and large it was OK, other than on my penultimate lap I came across an LMP3 car which everywhere I went, he went. Once your pace is the same in a straight line the LMP2s & 3s are broadly similar, so I went to pass him on the Hangar Straight and he pulled across and put me on  the grass, I don’t know what he was thinking, he was driving like it was the last lap of a 10-lap sprint race! At this level with different classes you do not need to be like that. It was an interesting moment, but I was conscious that for the first race for the team which really only came together on 10th January 2016, all we wanted was a clean race. All I wanted was to do my bit, and do a  good, safe pace, bring the car in and hand it over. I was pleased to do that.

SCG – If you can do it for 4-hours, it surely bodes well for Le Mans?

JC – Yes, I felt fine after that stint and ready to go again!

We look forward to bringing you more on this story as the season progresses.

No 22 So24 ! by Lombard Racing Ligier JS P2 Judd, Silverstone ELMS, 2016 (1)

 

Image Credit Kelvin Pope / SportsCarGlobal.