Darren drew first blood on Friday when he took pole position with a fantastic lap of Interlagos. This track is now firmly on the list of favourite circuits for Darren. During his first visit to Sao Paulo in 2012 he finished first and second in the two GT1 races so to take pole position and second place on his return in 2012 cements his love of the tricky technical track.
"We went into qualifying knowing that we had to go for pole but not really expecting to get it," said Darren. "The higher temperatures in the afternoon definitely helped us as the Vantage performs really well in the heat. The team gave me a beautifully-prepared car and the pole lap was an absolute pleasure to drive."
The strategy for the race was to lead from pole position and build up a time buffer back to the No.51 Ferrari. Stefan took the start and did well to avoid trouble when a few of the LMP2 cars made contact with each other. Although he had got away in the lead this incident put him back to fourth so instead of sailing away as planned he had to play catch up. He made light work of the Ferrari in third then set off after Marc Lieb in the No.77 Porsche and taking second place before handing over to Darren.
Darren took up the fight and started to reel in the lead Ferrari, which was now in the hands of Giancarlo Fisichella. Once he got within breathing distance of the Italian Darren was lined-up ready to pass him but kept getting rudely interrupted by passing LMP1 cars who broke up the battle every time they came through. Darren and Fisichella eventually pitted and Stefan continued the fight with Gianmaria Bruni.
The Ferrari took the win this time but the performance of Darren, Stefan and the Vantage GTE will have the Ferrari boys watching their mirrors very closely for the remainder of the season. A good points haul for Darren and Stefan means that Aston Martin Racing maintains a healthy second place in the championship with three rounds left to go.
"That was another great weekend," said Darren. "We came here expecting second place to be the best result we could get with the current fuel situation so taking pole and the extra championship point was a surprising bonus. It has been great to race at Interlagos. It’s a fantastic circuit and it made for a fun six-hour race. The only downside about coming here is the Churrascarias as it’s so hard not to overindulge the night before a big race!"