Tom looked forward to the final round of the GT4 European Championship at the incredible Nürburgring GP circuit in western Germany.
Free practice 1 started off very well for Tom and returning teammate Micah Stanley. Tom put a time in that was good enough for P6 overall, even with older tyres. Tom unfortunately didn’t manage to get out on track for free practice 2 due to damage to the car from debris on the track.
Qualifying proved to be very difficult for Tom. He drove the first two sectors extremely well but in the final sector, the 33 Bullit Mercedes spun off and caused a yellow flag, forcing Tom to back off costing him half a second. This was only good enough to put him P17, and as the peak of the tyres went away, he was unable to improve. Micah struggled in his session also, struggling with the pace of the car against the other manufacturers. He qualified a disappointing 23rd overall.
Tom started the first race. His initial getaway was good but choosing to stay safe and sticking to the inside cost him a few positions. As Tom made his way onto the 2nd lap, he had reclaimed 3 positions and had some good pace. Tom then made a move up the inside of one of the KTM’s. With the gap ever closing when Tom was up the inside, there was a slight bit of contact which would prove costly. As Tom made his way through the Schumacher ‘S’ he realised he had a puncture. Tom managed to get the car back to the pits but went a lap down. As Tom handed the car over to his teammate halfway through the race, he complained of a power steering issue. Unfortunately, only 3 laps into Micah’s stint, he had to retire the car due to the continued power steering issue.
The second race started a lot more cleanly than race 1. Micah maintained his position on the first lap. The race then settled down. With around 10 mins left of Micah’s stint he made 2 positions up with the 2 Mercedes making contact. Micah came in in 22nd. After a very good pitstop, the pair jumped their teammates and Tom began trying to get into the top 15. On the first two laps out, Tom made his way past 2 cars until he received a radio message stating that the car had been just 4 tenths of a second under the minimum pitstop time meaning Tom had to serve a 1 second stop and go penalty. He came back out on his own in 24th position. With around 10 mins left he caught the two cars squabbling over 22nd place and managed to capitalise getting past one of the Mercedes. Struggling with pace, Tom had to settle for 23rd after chasing the W&D BMW for the final laps of the race.
Tom Wood “A disappointing weekend for us after such optimism at the start. I’d just like to say a big thank you to Academy Motorsport for their hard work all weekend. We struggled a lot with the BOP which is a big shame and not the way we wanted to end our season. A big thanks also to Aston Martin Racing, and the guys that we’re here supporting us trying to make the car more competitive.”