WEC ROUND ONE | 1000M SEBRING | MARCH 15 - 17
Contesting his first race with United Autosports, Tom joined Olly Jarvis and Josh Pierson in the #23 ORECA 07 for the opening round of the 2023 FIA World Endurance Championship.
Teammate Olly Jarvis was on qualifying duties and delivered the perfect start to the season for the team as he recorded pole position at Sebring International Raceway.
Jarvis then started the 1000 race on Friday and dominated the opening stages of the race in the LMP2 category. Jarvis then handed driving duties over to Josh Pierson. American Pierson then continued to extend the lead for the United Autosports #23 ORECA 07 over a triple stint.
As Tom kitted up and prepared for his first-ever stint with the team, the car suddenly came to a halt from the lead of the race and stopped out on track. Diagnosing the problem, it was found that the car had experienced an electrical failure which was caused by a broken in-car TV camera fixture that was not installed by the United Autosports team – a heartbreaking end for the #23 crew.
“I’m gutted for the team – the whole #23 crew have done an absolutely fantastic job. We were leading comfortably, we had a great strategy. Josh did an amazing job extending our lead – he was just about to finish his triple and I was about to get in. To have it go like that is just … it’s heartbreaking. It really is painful. I feel so sorry for everyone - for Josh and Olly, for the whole crew - after putting in such a fantastic job. We’ve been here nearly 10 days now and for it to end like that is very hard to take.”
Tom's next stop with United Autosports in the FIA World Endurance Championship calendar takes him and the team to the 6 Hours of Portimão on Sunday 16th April 2023.
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