Shanghai, Oct 28: India’s Karun Chandhok and his JRM Racing team finished the final race of their first season in the FIA World Endurance Championship, the Six Hours of Shanghai, second in the privateers class and fifth overall, equalling the team’s best result of the season, here Sunday.
The team, that also included David Brabham and Peter Dumbreck besides Chandhok, achieved its second podium finish in a row while finishing its first season in endurance racing third of the privateers LMP1 outfits.
The team started the race from the Privateers’ pole and fourth overall, the team’s best starting position of the season. Chandhok got the race underway and was first in the car initially keeping in front of the Rebellion and the Strakka cars.
It was an intense battle that finally ended with Chandhok falling back into the clutches of both before stopping for the first pit-stop of the race, rejoining in sixth position overall.
Two hours into the race, the Strakka suffered a puncture and then required a replacement rear end, with Chandhok climbing back up to fifth.
After a triple stint and 75 laps, the Indian handed over to Dumbreck who immediately got up to speed, rejoining the race in fifth position overall and lapping at a very constant pace during his stints.
During the final driver change, the rear bodywork had to be changed, costing one minute and putting the team out of contention to fight for the win in the privateers’ class.
However, Brabham still rejoined the race in fifth position overall and second in class, maintaining a close fight with the Rebellion. Even though he was experiencing problems with the steering wheel, he fought for second until, with 30 minutes to go, the Rebellion finally hunted Brahgam down.
There was however drama on the penultimate lap when the leading Rebellion stopped on track, allowing Brabham to regain a position and cross the finish line in second position in class, only eight seconds behind the class winner.
Chandhok said: “We started off reasonably well and the first couple of laps were okay, but we realised early on that we were not quick enough when compared to Rebellion and the Strakka cars.
“But to finish on the podium again is a perfect way to end the season. We can be proud of the way we have improved over the year and I have enjoyed my first season in endurance racing.”