Hillsborough endurance racer Daniel Harper has said the lessons learned from his recent 24 Hours of Nürburgring heartbreak will only help make him a more rounded driver.
Harper and his BMW Junior team-mates Neil Verhagen and Max Hesse are back in action this weekend at Circuit Paul Ricard in France for the fourth round of the Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe series.
An hour-long qualifying session on Saturday morning to determine grid positions will be followed in the evening by a six-hour race that will see competitors chalk up over six hundred miles around the 90,000-seat circuit.
The event at Le Castellet comes just days after the young trio’s hopes of challenging for victory at the 50th running of the 24 Hours of Nürburgring were dashed by an un yet explained incident involving Hasse.
It happened around the 15-hour mark, although the German walked away uninjured from the shunt. During his first stint earlier in the event around ‘the Green Hell’, Harper picked up frontal damage when he came to blows with a back marker.
The resulting damage required him to return to the pits where mechanics spent the best part of 30 minutes patching up the BMW M4 GT4 before it could rejoin the action.
“We have Paul Ricard this weekend, so there is no time to overthink about what happened – we have to put it behind us,” said former Porsche Carrera Cup GB champion Harper.
“We are already focused on the next one and will take what we learned from the 24 Hours of Nürburgring into Paul Ricard and hope for a better result. It wasn’t the result we wanted at the Nürburgring or what we were aiming for.
“Obviously, the main disappointment is not scoring the result for BMW on their anniversary – 50 years of BMW’s M Division – so that’s disappointing and we are sorry to them for not doing well. It just wasn’t meant to be for us unfortunately.
“The contact I had in my first stint which cost us a lot of time and then Max had the incident in the morning – something we still need to look in to because we are not so sure what went on there – was frustrating because running though the night there was good pace – we were always in the top five.
“It was a bit strange how it happened but we will look at it with the team and take it as experience and go again the next time,” he added.