This weekend Andrew Watson and his Garage 59 outfit take on the biggest GT race in the world and the highlight of the Blancpain GT Series - the 24 Hours of Spa.
24-year-old Aston Martin Racing Junior Andrew Watson will return to his racing duties this weekend, along with regular team-mates Jonny Adam and Côme Ledogar. Andrew and his team will attempt to pick up some silverware in the 35-car PRO class at one of the world’s most iconic race tracks - the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, for what is the biggest GT race in the world.
This year a record-breaking 72 cars will enter the twice-around-the-clock annual event, all aiming for glory at the 4.352-mile Belgium circuit nestled in the Ardennes. The 24 Hours of Spa is steeped in a rich history that dates back to the inaugural race in 1924 and now the race forms the blue riband event for the Blancpain GT Series.
Andrew’s 2019 season has been filled with mixed fortunes where the strong pace of the #59 Aston Martin hasn’t reflected in the team’s results. At the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup season-opener in Monza, Andrew and his team-mates celebrated with a point-scoring finish at the Temple of Speed. For the season’s home event at Silverstone, the success wasn’t repeated and the trio were forced into retirement on the first lap through no fault of their own.
At the last round of Paul Ricard, the Gratte Brothers-sponsored driver’s race ended mid-way into the proceedings due to mechanical issues whilst battling for the podium places. With the run of bad luck hopefully behind them, Andrew is determined to make Spa a memorable event on his fourth attempt at the race.
“This is the highlight on the Blancpain GT Series calendar so I am really looking forward to it,” Andrew said ahead of the weekend. “Every racing driver loves Spa - it is so special and the track is immensely challenging but fun at the same time. It is fast, leaves no margin for error, and features some of the best corners in the world!
“I am optimistic heading to Belgium - we are due some good fortune after things that have happened beyond our control. I know the team and I are pushing as hard as we can to secure a good result this weekend!”
The 24 Hours of Spa sees a jam-packed timetable for the week ahead. Activities get underway on Wednesday 24th July with several media events in the evening. The track action begins on Thursday morning with a free practice session at 10:10 (BST) followed by pre-qualifying at 15:15. Qualifying will then take place at 19:00 and the super pole showdown follows on Friday at 18:05 to determine the top 20 on the grid. Lights out for the 2019 24 Hours of Spa will be at 15:30 on Saturday.