Tom Jackson, BRDC F4 race-winner with Chris Dittmann Racing, was given a taste of top-line prototypes in Bahrain as part of the FIA World Endurance Championship’s rookie test on November 20.
The Kent 20-year-old spent two days driving the Jota-run G-Drive LMP2 that secured third in the championship with a dramatic victory in the 6 Hours of Bahrain just the day before. He completed 24 laps and ended the session seventh fastest, sharing driving duties with the more experienced Felix Serralles.
His best time was just 1.2s shy of the fastest set by LMP2 regular Alex Brundle, who won the 6 Hours of Bahrain driving the same G-Drive LMP2.
Jackson won twice in BRDC F4 with Chris Dittmann Racing in 2015 on the way to third in the final points table, taking the title fight to the eventual champion Will Palmer. He spent time in CDR’s BRDC British F3 car recently at Snetterton to prepare for the test.
Tom said: “It was a great experience from start to finish, being out in Bahrain for the whole WEC event and seeing how all these prestigious teams operate, it was another league from anything prior.
“In the race on Saturday G-Drive won a well deserved race after starting from last position. So I had some pressure going into the test with the race-winning car.
“The test day was mostly given to Felix, with me having the last hour of track time. Where I completed around the 17 timed laps mark. The tyre grip degradation was insane how much the tyres dropped off after 2 push laps. All in all it was great to get my chance to drive the GDrive LMP2 car and to do it out in Bahrain and in a WEC test is something I’m not going to forget for a long time!”
Chris Dittmann, team principal, said: “It’s great that Tom turned to us to prepare for the test, I was delighted we could help. I’m really pleased for Tom that he was given the chance to show what he can do on one of the world’s biggest stages.
“He really deserves his shot. In 2015 he showed how talented he is and his progression year on year underlines his ability to learn as a driver, which is vital if he is to fulfil his potential.”