JMW Motorsport walked away from the third round of the 2016 European Le Mans Series all smiles as they took the LMGTE win in commanding style.
Held at the stunning Red Bull Ring circuit in Austria, the race weekend was made all the sweeter by fine weather and an eager crowd.
Andrea Bertolini took the wheel for qualifying, putting the JMW Ferrari 458 second of the GTE grid. Race start duties were on the shoulders of team-mate Rory Butcher who put in a blistering opening set of laps to take the lead of the polesitting #88 Porsche. Silver ranked Rory put in a display which won much admiration as he pulled out a healthy lead before a hair -raising moment when he was clipped by the leading LMP2 #23 Panis Barthez Competition Ligier. Both cars went off track, but Rory kept his cool and got the car safely back onto the black stuff! Keeping the lead, a relieved Rory handed over to Bronze rated Rob Smith.
Rob put in a strong stint, and showed hit full mettle as a spin dropped him back but he put his head down and gained the pace back. As the halfway point loomed a full course yellow came into play and JMW took the opportunity to complete their next pitstop and hand over to Andrea.
Andrea put in a stint that was a true lesson in 'how to race GTs at their best'! Pulling out a healthy lead, Andrea handed back to Rory with 1 hour and 10 minutes of the race to run. Rory came back with just as much if not even more zest than when he opened the race, if that's possible! Bringing the car over the line with a lap adventure over second, and leading a podium full house of Ferraris, the cheers rang through the mountains as JMW secured a hard fought and much deserved win.
Andrea heaped praise on the team "What is also key is the driver line-up. I have the best bronze and silver drivers in the ELMS. They made the difference and so did our team"
Check out the post race conference video to hear from the JMW winning trio.
Click here to see the full race gallery.
JMW Motorsport now lie third in the championship at the half way point of the season and are now preparing for Round 4 which will be held at Paul Ricard on August 28th.