Ryan Ratcliffe 2018

Produced by Abbott Designs Ltd


Dubai - 13-14/01/17

Optimum Motorsport

Finish Dubai 24 Hours with Strong P4 Overall

Optimum Motorsport underlined its considerable endurance racing pedigree in the season-opening Hankook Tyres 24 Hours of Dubai today (14 January, 2017).

The British team was battling from the start, for outright victory with its Audi R8 LMS, eventually settling for fourth in a tough race, littered with Code 60 safety periods.

Team Principal Shaun Goff said, “To be the best Audi with P4 is a big achievement in a 99-car grid, coming ahead of the (Belgian Audi) WRT squad. It’s really satisfying for us. Big thanks to all the drivers and support team for their time during the weekend.”

Sharing the driving duties in the #14 Audi R8 LMs GT3 were Christopher Haase, Flick Haigh, Ryan Ratcliffe and Joe Osborne.

The start of the race proved to be frenetic, with the #14 Audi losing positions initially before regaining ground to run in fourth position in the A6-Pro class. As the race unfolded, with an unprecedented 21 Code 60 periods, strategy became something of a lottery but the team were still confident of a solid result.

After 20 hours of largely trouble-free running a power steering failure in the midst of Joe Osborne’s stint put the podium chase on hold and presented the drivers with a real physical challenge to bring the car home, eventually succeeding with a hard-fought fourth position.

“Probably my most enjoyable race, but also the hardest race – especially in those last few stint as we didn’t have any power steering,” Ratcliffe explained. “The team have done a really good job and we wanted to bring the car home. We were behind the P3 and hoping they might have a mechanical issue or something. P4 is the same as last year which isn’t really what we wanted but everyone has driven really well and that’s all we can really ask for.”

Flick Haigh echoed Ratcliffe’s comments. “The car was really good except for the power steering issue, which forced us to change the strategy,” she explained. “I am sad I’ve been out of the car for 14 hours since then! It’s the same result as last year which with this grid isn’t bad at all.”

Having kicked the 2017 season off on such a positive note, Optimum Motorsport will now focus on the season ahead which will include British GT as well as further outings in the Hankook Tyres 24H Series.

For more information on Optimum Motorsport and its racing activities, please visit the official 

www.optimum-motorsport.com website, ‘like’ the team’s Facebook page or follow @OptimumMSport on Twitter.