Silver for Midlothian’s Colin Noble in Portugal

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It’s been a very successful season for Nielsen Racing in the Michelin Le Mans Cup which continued last weekend in the final round of the championship in Portimão.

The race saw a superb second place finish for Midlothian driver Colin Noble and teammate Tony Wells.

With previous podiums at Paul Ricard, Monza, Barcelona and Spa Francorchamps the team was confident heading into the race weekend with the #2 entry as well as the #20 Grainmarket Norma driven by Alex Mortimer and Mark Crader.

Following practice, qualifying came down to Tony and Mark respectively.

The Bronze racers went on to record the sixth and 13th best times respectively.

It was an early start on the Sunday morning, with the two drivers taking up their positions on the grid.

Tony made a good start to gain a position into the first corner from the #5 DKR Engineering and set after the #39 Graff, soon gaining the spot to run a solid fourth overall.

Tony set about closing the margin to the #25 Lanan Racing entry before pitting and handing the #7 Norma over to Colin.

Just ahead, the two championship rivals collided with the #3 DKR losing ground, while the #25 Lanan car pitted for a penalty and was out of the running. Colin now ran in second position and despite closing the gap to the race winner, had to settle for second position.

Mark and Alex in the sister car had a tougher race and were unable to repeat the great performances that saw them finish fourth at Monza and Spa.

The former made a good getaway at the start to gain three positions to run in tenth.

An early tactical stop should have paid dividends, but a sticking wheel gun resulted in a longer than planned stop.

Mark completed his stint and handed over to Alex who did another solid job to bring the #20 Norma home in 14th position.

With five podiums from seven starts, Nielsen Racing finish the Michelin Le Mans Cup championship in a very creditable third position.

“It was a fairly straightforward race for me,” said Colin.

“The car had good pace, but it is very difficult to pass here, so perhaps qualifying hurt us a little and stopped us running closer to the front from the start.

“But second is a good result and I’m very happy to finish the season off with another strong showing.”