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Cammish takes epic Le Mans victory
June 18th, 2017
Daniel Cammish took a fantastic victory at the famous Le Mans circuit to leave few doubting that he is one of the fastest Porsche drivers in the world.
The Leeds-based driver was on the pace from the very start of the weeklong event when free practice took place on Thursday morning. The Nationwide Crash Repair/PPG Paint-backed car was third fastest in the first session but was unable to set a representative time in the second session after contact with a chicane marker damaged the car. However, this did not deter the back-to-back Carrera Cup GB champion as he went on to take third on the grid during the hour-long Thursday afternoon qualifying session.
“It was almost impossible in qualifying to get a clear lap,” said Dan. “I was always compromised. I was a second up on my predicted time, but we ended up third, which wasn’t too bad. We knew we had the car and we knew we could race from there, particularly as it is a very long lap here.”
Come race day, Dan was clearly on a mission. The temperature was on its way to 30 degrees when the race started at 10:15 local time but Dan kept cool, despite being boxed out at the first chicane and relegated to fifth place. A yellow flag period followed as an incident involving nine cars was cleared, but once racing resumed Dan began picking up places. He decisively moved up to fourth using the tow along the long Mulsanne straights, repeating the move further around the lap to take third. By lap five, he was up into second place before taking the lead.
With over half an hour of the race left to run, Dan had to fight to maintain the lead, temporarily losing it on the final lap. An audacious move around the outside into the banked Indianapolis corner ensured he reclaimed the place and control of the race. From there he only had to bring the car home.
“It was amazing. It has been a great week and it’s a fantastic opportunity to be here and to race at such a historic circuit. The first lap was a bit of a bottleneck and I dropped to fifth, but I was able to work my way back. There was a lot of pressure and it was almost impossible to break away."
“The tow was massive, Alessio [Rovera] never got close enough to get in front of me. He could get alongside but didn’t have the extra bit until the last lap. I knew I could do it though. When I saw the chequered flag, I was very relived. We’ve had three good weeks of racing but, with 60 cars here this weekend, it is very special. This is probably the best win of my career.”
The result is exactly what Dan needed to keep his title aspirations on track. The victory extends his lead over team-mate Charlie Eastwood to 23 points. As Dan will not be racing at Snetterton due to clashing Porsche Supercup commitments, the gap ensures that even if Charlie wins both races and with dropped scores, Dan will still be within reach of his third title.
Dan will next be racing in the Porsche Supercup around the Red Bull Ring in Austria on the 7th & 8th July before taking his home race one week later at Silverstone.