Ross robbed of driving Motorbase Performance Aston Martin in final race
Ross Wylie has already begun planning for 2017 this week after the final race of the 2016 British GT Championship campaign at Donington Park yesterday (11 Sep) saw the Scotsman post an unfortunate retirement – even before he had a chance to get in to the Motorbase Performance Aston Martin Vantage. Ross’s co-driver, Phil Dryburgh, challenging for fifth place made contact with another car which appeared to brake earlier than normal for a corner causing engine and bodywork damage in the opening stages of the two-hour race.
This latest disappointment comes on the back of Ross non-starting his maiden 24 Hour earlier this month. Wylie had been due to contest the Hankook 24 Hours of Barcelona (3-4 Sep) but the Ferrari 458 that he was due to share caught fire in a pre-race practice session causing damage that could not be repaired.
The Donington race looked likely to allow Wylie to score his sixth top-10 finish of the year and possibly better his best race result of the season of fifth place – four days before his 25th birthday – after qualifying eighth – his best start position of the season. But “lady luck”, which seems to have deserted the Dumfries driver since winning the 2014 British GT4 Championship failed to materialise. He and Dryburgh were classified 11th in the final championship standings.
2016 marked Ross’s third consecutive BGT season. Having raced karts between 2004-11 Ross, who is supported by Carronbridge Sawmill and A.W. Jenkinson Forest Products, contested the Celtic Speed Mini Cooper Cup (2012), the Volkswagen UK Racing Cup & Scirocco R-Cup (2013) and was selected a BRDC “Rising Star” that year. The former Scottish Motor Racing Club Ecurie Ecosse Hub Cap Trophy winner and Knockhill “Young Saloon Car Driver of the Year” achieved six GT4 podiums from six races in his maiden BGT season in 2014. Last year, Ross netted six overall top-10 placings in the Von Ryan Racing McLaren 650S GT3.
“It feels like I’ve only had one kind of luck for the past two years and that’s no luck at all. That said, I’m not someone who feels sorry for themselves for long and these setbacks make me even more determined to succeed in the future. It’s now full speed ahead in the coming weeks and months to decide which direction my career takes after three seasons in BGT. It’s just a case of sucking it up, taking these knocks on the chin and hitting the reset button. I’m already planning on doing some karting over the winter to keep myself sharp while in the meantime putting a plan together for next season. I was delighted to see my good friend Jonny Adam and his co-driver win the Championship title.”