Eddie showed that three months away from the race track hadn’t slowed him down as he cruised to a dominant victory first time out in 2009, largely thanks to an incredibly strong driver line-up.
Eddie was making a one-off appearance in the Open Endurance Championship with top Premier Sprint and Premier Endurance drivers Kieran McCullough and Lee Clackett. The trio dominated the 3 hour race, winning with a comfortable 2 lap margin over the next team, taking fastest lap to boot.
After only a minor engine tweak during practice, Kieran qualified fourth out of the 36 teams. Eddie took the start and was double stinted, coming in for the first driver change in the lead.
“It was a pretty hairy start. I got up to second or third at the first corner but only just managed to hold on because some numpties behind me decided to play a bit of bumper cars. I spent most of the first stint in fifth trying to find a way past Glen Beard so the team pulled me in for an early stop because they could see I was getting held up.”
The tactic didn’t quite pay off as Eddie rejoined in the mid-field and had to fight his way through the traffic. Despite this, Eddie clawed his way back up the order before handing over to Kieran.
“It was a good stint with no real dramas. I was happy with my pace and pulled off some good moves to get us in to a net second. Obviously Kieran went out and it didn’t take him long to get us into the lead and it was plain sailing from there really.”
Kieran and Lee did two single stints each to complete the race and, as expected, both drove flawlessly, pulling out several tenths of a second per lap.
The only concern during the race was when it was stopped at half distance due to a multiple accident at the first hairpin. However, the demise of main rivals Ministry of Speed (who were joined by Clackett’s team mate, Jamie Jakins) meant that it was plain sailing for Hall, McCullough and Clackett.
Eddie was delighted after the race:
“Obviously it was a great experience to compete in the same team as such great drivers and I feel privileged to have been given the opportunity to join them. I was very encouraged to see that in terms of preparation and strategy they do things the same way as I have always done and they have the same way of thinking so that is good. It really just highlighted the difference it makes having quick team mates and this gives me huge confidence about my new team this year.”