For the fourth year the squeal of tyres and the roar of engines heralded the annual Insurance Endurance karting event in association with Insurance Times.
Verity Adams reports from the heat of the track

As the starting flag came down, scores of leading industry players slammed their foot on the accelerator and sped off, hoping to reach speeds of up to 75mph.

Hundreds of teammates cheered them on from the sidelines as their drivers battled for a top spot during the testing eight-hour Insurance Endurance go-karting experience, at the Daytona racetrack in Milton Keynes.

The prospect of rain only upped the ante for the most competitive and able of the drivers, who beamed at the prospect of the featherweights flying off the corners as they sat tight to the track.

Meanwhile teammates were entranced with the race as they waited for the driver changeovers, shouting words of encouragement in an atmosphere fuelled by adrenaline.

Mark Whitehead, e-commerce manager, Europe, at Ace, who joined the Insurance Tines team, said: "I was of course immensely impressed with the extensive late-night planning session [the night before], as well as the highly strategic naps that were scheduled throughout the subsequent day to allow the team to recover and drive fully refreshed.

"On a serious note, it was a great event, especially from a networking perspective."

The Gerling team, who looked the professional Michael Schumachers in their own white and blue race suits, were in pole position at the start of the race but direct marketing company, Team Trading Floor pipped them at the post.

Graham Faggetter, syndicate manager at Gerling, says: "This is the third year that Gerling has entered an all staff team and the third year that we have narrowly avoided that elusive top step of the podium and seeing the Gerling name emblazoned on the splendid trophy.

"Once again the organisation and attention to detail throughout the whole event was immaculate and it's no surprise that it attracted a grid of over 30 teams from the insurance industry. We are hoping to make one step in the right direction next year."

Catterall Insurance Services won the pit stop challenge by changing four tyres in 18.7 seconds. THB (Risk Solutions) came runner-up with 19.85 seconds, and JDLA were third with a time of 20.13.

The fastest lap of the day was 1minute 0.95seconds by MMA Insurance.