It’s been a busy month for Prosperity Investment Management and its partners across various continents and in multiple series.
Newly partnered Callum Ilott ran a successful weekend in Paul Ricard having qualified in the top-six for the third time in a row. The Ferrari Academy driver had issues in the weekends Feature Race but enjoyed a rapid progression in Sunday’s Sprint Race to elevate from P15 to eighth. The 20-year-old faces the Red Bull Ring this weekend with Sauber Junior Team by Charouz as he searches for his second podium of the season.
Prosperity Investment Management (PIM) were also in attendance of one of the world’s largest motorsports events, the 24 Hours of Le Mans in the midst of June. Brand Ambassadors Mike Conway and Nicky Catsburg were amongst the 183 drivers competing in a 62-car grid.
Mike sat alongside former Formula 1 driver, Kamui Kobayashi, and Formula E pilot, José María López, in the #7 Toyota TS050 Hybrid. The trio headed a Toyota front-row lockout with Kobayashi setting a rapid 3:15.497 to slot into pole position ahead of the #8 sister car of Sébastien Buemi, Kazuki Nakajima and Fernando Alonso.
Mike took the start of the famous race and immediately set to work. Within four laps, he had maintained the race lead and also set the fastest lap of the race with a 3:17:297. A number of safety cars and full course yellow periods meant that the two Toyotas were swapping positions, the #7 regained the lead overnight where the trio had extended their lead to 80-seconds.
With less than an hour remaining, heartbreak ensued the #7 as López received a puncture. Unfortunately, he had to lap the entire circuit with a deflating tyre which ultimately allowed the #8 to take the lead. Despite a large effort to retake the lead, the #7 crossed the finish line in second place, 18-seconds behind the #8. The result is Mike’s third-second place finish in the renowned race and he concluded the championship in second place having won four pole positions, seven podiums and two wins throughout the year.
Nicky Catsburg wrapped up BMWs final World Endurance Championship race in 14th place in class. BMW celebrated the 20th anniversary of the 1999 Le Mans win as well as the 80th anniversary of the very first BMW class win over the weekend. The two honoured cars, the BMW V12 LMR and BMW 328, paraded around the Circuit de la Sarthe before the start of the race.
Although Le Mans didn’t go to plan as the team ran into some technical issues in the race, Nicky and team still managed to complete the 24-hours to bow out of BMWs final WEC entry season. Nicky then went straight to the Nordschleife last weekend for the WTCR Race of Germany and the ADAC Total 24 Hours of the Nürburgring. He finished two of the three races in WTCR inside the top ten but unfortunately was unable to finish the flagship 24-hours.
Rewards programme members Nielsen Racing were also in action during the Le Mans weekend, with the team lining up in the Road to Le Mans.
The team fielded four cars in the supporting race that housed a competitive grid of over 50 LMP3 and GT3 cars. All four Nielsen entrants finished the first of two races inside the top half of the field with Tony Wells and Colin Noble driving a faultless race to finish in the top three.
The British based team recently announced their 2019/20 Asian Le Mans campaign with the Norma M30 LMP3 they used in the Road to Le Mans. The championship starts at the end of the year with their driver line-up yet to be announced.
Aidan Read was also in attendance of the Le Mans weekend. The Australian stayed in Europe after the third round of the ADAC GT Masters and overshadowed Asian Le Mans teammate Nobuya Yamanaka. The Japanese driver is on his journey to achieving his goal of driving in the legendary 24-Hours race, as he paired with James Littlejohn in Nielsen Racing’s Road to Le Mans campaign.