Reigning Asian Le Mans Series LMP2 champion Harrison Newey is racing with fellow British driver Ryan Cullen and American Gustavo Menezes in the #31 APR-Rebellion Racing Oreca-Gibson in the 2018 European Le Mans Series.
Last time out in Austria the team achieved their best result so far with a 6th place finish at the Red Bull Ring and they will be aiming for the podium at the 4 Hours of Silverstone on Saturday 18 August.
20-year-old Newey lives in Oxford, just 30 miles from Silverstone’s front gate and the 2016-17 MRD Challenge Formula 2000 champion, and son of famed F1 designer Adrian Newey, will be hoping for podium success on a circuit he knows so well.
We caught up with Harrison as he prepares for round 4 of the 2018 European Le Mans Series.
What is the best thing for you as a British driver about racing at Silverstone?
“I think the best thing about racing at Silverstone is the home crowd. It’s also nice for me because it isn’t too far from home and I’ve been going to Silverstone for quite a while, since I was very young, so there are lots of great memories attached to the circuit. Of course, to be racing at one of the biggest motorsport events of the year is also special, but I truly believe it’s one of the best tracks in the world and, for me, it’s definitely one of the most enjoyable races of the season.”
What is your favourite corner at Silverstone?
“My favourite corners are, by far, Maggotts and Becketts. It’s a fantastic series of corners and, again, one of the best in the world.”
What are your thoughts on the competition in LMP2 this season?
“I think LMP2 has taken a massive step up compared to previous seasons of the European Le Mans Series. Of course, I hadn’t raced in the ELMS prior to this year, but looking in it seems the level of the drivers is extremely high, there are a lot of cars – 19 LMP2 cars is more than we’ve really seen before – there are a lot of ORECA 07s, which are very fast, and there are a lot of fantastic teams in the field too.”
What is the appeal of endurance racing to you as a racing driver?
“The nice thing about endurance racing is that you can never give up. You face a really long race, you have teammates to work with and there’s more of a team atmosphere, which you don’t typically get in single-seaters. You can make a mistake in the first stint and, although nowadays ELMS races are four-hour sprints, you have an opportunity to make up for the lost time. The cars are very rewarding to drive as well.”
What are you hoping to achieve at Silverstone?
“As far as what I want to achieve at Silverstone, I’m simply going to go out and do the best job I possibly can. In the most recent races at Monza and the Red Bull Ring, my APR-Rebellion teammates, Ryan Cullen, Gustavo Menezes and I all had the pace to be on the podium and we were up there at times. A podium would be nice, but I am just focusing on doing the best job I can and where that puts us is where that puts us.”