Running without fanfare but with impressive consistency in the top six throughout the three hours, the Lotus Elan, driven by John Tordoff (father of former BTCC driver, Sam Tordoff) and Andrew Jordan, the 2013 BTCC champion, made its presence known in the final ten laps of the feature race at the Spa Summer Classic race meeting on 6-9 July. The nimble British car proved impervious to troubles and showcased remarkable pace in the latter stages of the race.
The first hour saw the pole-sitting Ginetta G4R of Danish duo Palle Pedersen and Nicolai Kjaergaard at the head of the pack, but the car retired after setting the best lap of the race, handing the lead to the TVR Griffith 200 driven by Harry Barton and Oliver Reuben. The Brits were subsequently demoted by an overlong pitstop catapulting the two Rolner family 911 3.0.RS Porsches, driven by Lars Rolner and local driver Pierre-Alain Thibaut and Annette Rolner and Michael Holden, into the lead. However, a safety-car brought the field together with two hours remaining.
Luck was not on the Rolner family’s side, and as the clock ticked down to the halfway point, the pink Porsche ‘stalled’ in the second sector of the track, while the car bearing Martini Racing colours would sink down the standings seven laps later after having completed six laps at the top of the standings. Between these two misfortunes, the Jaguar E-type of Rhea Sautter and Andy Newall moved into the race lead by two laps.
By the end of the second hour, the Shelby Cobra of Charlie Allison and Peter Thompson had taken over the lead, chased by the Ford Shelby Mustang 350 GT of the Devis family, who would retire with two laps to go, and the Shelby Cobra of Jacques Catelein, Kurt Dujardin and Marc Duez – the former rally driver who also won the 24 Hours of Nürburgring and the 24 Hours of Spa.
But as the final pitstops unwound, Tordoff and Jordan surged into the lead in the last half hour and never relinquished the position, securing victory ahead of the Sautter/Newall E-type and the Lotus Elan of Alexis, Christian and Lando Graf von Wedel. Rolner and Thibaut were compensated with a win in the H-1976 class and Jos Stevens and Bob Stevens, driving a Lotus Elan, went home with the top prize for the Index of Performance.
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