Back-to-back British GT champion Jonny Adam capped an extraordinary year by underlining his fine form with Aston Martin Racing in the desert heat of Bahrain.
Having been called up to partner Darren Turner in the #97 Aston Martin V8 Vantage GTE for the final round of the World Endurance Championship, the Scotsman turned in a polished performance at the Sakhir circuit.
After helping the squad to top the timesheets in free practice, Adam then clocked exactly the same time as team-mate Turner in qualifying to put their car on pole in the GTE Pro class.
After making a solid start the Aston Martin Racing factory drivers were 15 seconds in the lead and on course not only to win the race but help the team to a manufacturers championship win when all their good work was suddenly undone.
An issue with the front right wheel forced them to pit for repairs, and despite fast work by the engineers to identify and fix the problem the visit to the garage cost them one-and-a-half laps.
After re-joining the race Adam and Turner wasted no time in battling back through the field, clawing back precious seconds to eventually finish fifth overall in the Pro class.
While frustrated at the outcome of the race on personal level, Jonny was pleased to see the sister AMR #95 car go on to win the event and with it claim a world championship.
“It was great to be back with Aston Martin Racing in the World Endurance Championship at Bahrain. As a team we showed great pace over both Pro cars and the overall performance level was a real testament to the hard work everyone at Prodrive and our partners Dunlop and Total have put in this year.
“We were in prime position to take a win and potentially a manufacturers championship for Aston Martin, but we were just really unlucky with what happened at the half way point.
“On the plus side it was great to be back racing with Darren this weekend and amazing to see the ‘Dane Train’ of Marco and Nicki win the drivers and teams world title, they’re great guys and I’m delighted for them.”
While the WEC finale was Adam’s final competitive outing of 2016, he has no plans to rest on his laurels and his attention has already turned to plans for next season.
“I’m really looking forward to being back with Derek Johnston and TF sport in British GT after an extremely successful 2016, and it’s nice to get that deal confirmed early.
“We have a good testing plan in place to fine tune the Aston Martin V12 Vantage GT3 ahead of the season beginning, and that will give us all confidence that we can be right on the pace from the first race.
“The competition will be even tougher again this year, but our aim is to defend the title and I’m gunning for championship number three which is a huge incentive.”
In addition to the British GT title defence Jonny is working hard to secure further outings at international level.
“Hopefully throughout this season I’ve shown both in the Blancpain and WEC that I have the speed and consistency to compete with the very best GT racers in the world. I like to be kept busy so would really like the opportunity to build on what I’ve achieved this year and be involved at the highest level again in 2017.”