Eastwood attains Super Star status

Eastwood attains Super Star status

TF Sport's Charlie Eastwood becomes the latest person wearing an Aston Martin Racing team coverall to be recognised by the British Racing Drivers Club Superstar driver development programme.

Admittedly, having gained this recognition for his championship winning efforts in the Porsche Carrera Cup GB last year, the young Irishman is just the third AMR driver in recent times to receive such an accolade behind Ross Wylie in 2014 and Ross Gunn in 2016.

The purpose of the programme is to allow for networking within the BRDC as well as direct training and mentoring in disciplines such as fitness, career guidance, PR and sponsorship skills and media, etc.

We will see Eastwood race with the TF Sport team in both their V8 Vantage GTE entered into the GTE Am Side of the World Endurance Championship (and Le Mans) as well as aboard the Oman Racing V12 Vantage GT3 entered into the Blancpain GT Series Silver Cup.

Photo credits - BRDC

Wednesday, March 14, 2018 |
James joins Academy in GT4  European Series

James joins Academy in GT4 European Series

Soon after testing with the crew at the collective Aston Martin Racing test at Portimao last weekend, Dutch Supercar Challenge racer Fiona James has confirmed that she will be joining Academy Motorsport in one of their V8 Vantage GT4 for the 2018 GT4 European series.

Founder and owner of the race underwear company Walero, James has been racing since 2006 in a number of series and cars most recently her Praga in the Dutch run Supercar Challenge but now she faces her toughest challenge yet as she joins team boss Matt Nichol-Jones in the European series that starts in just three weeks time.

"I'm really excited to be racing with Matt in the GT4 Aston Martin Vantage, & am looking forwards to progressing with his help. It's a big step up to be racing in European GT4 but I'm really looking forwards to the challenge!" said James as she broke the news

It will be a busy three weeks for the Worcester team having had two cars confirmed in both the British GT Champion and the GT4 European Series, events which run just a week apart. 

The driver line for the teams second car will be announced in due course.

Photo credits - Supercar Challenge

Wednesday, March 14, 2018 |
Blancpain GT Official Test at Paul Ricard

Blancpain GT Official Test at Paul Ricard

Three of Prodrive's finest Aston Martin Racing V12 Vantage GT3's will be on parade tomorrow at the start of the annual two day Blancpain GT Series Official Test form the Paul Ricard Circuit in southern France.

Returning to the series having won the Pro-Am Championship last year is the TF Sport prepared Oman Racing Team Vantage of Ahmad Al Harthy along with new drivers Euan McKay and Charlie Eastwood. They will be competing in the new Silver Cup class for 2018.

We believe that former TF Sport resident Pro driver, Jonny Adam will also be on hand again at the test to help dial the team in for what will be (as always) a highly competitive series.

Joining them in the series for the first time as a full season entrant will be two V12 Vantage GT3's from the Swiss based R-Motorsport team who will be running both cars in the Pro Class.

Confirming their driver arrangements for the first time (for the test at least) we see that Nicki Thiim joins forces with Jake Dennis and Mathieu Vaxiviere in the #62 car whilst Alex Brundle and Maxime Martin join the teams newest recruit in Marvin KirchHoefer in the #76 car who was only confirmed late last week.

Not much has been seen of these two grey and blue liveried cars form the St Gallen stable since their announcement over the winter other than pictures from their first private test from Monteblanco at the turn of the year and then the series Balance of Performance test from Ricard just last week.

The test is set to run over two lots of four and three hour sessions over each of tomorrow and Wednesday so hopefully the series will post some more shots and videos of these three (please)?

Photo credits - R-Motorsport / TF Sport

Monday, March 12, 2018 |
TF Sport competition time..............

TF Sport competition time..............

With the start of the British GT Championship at Oulton Park just under three weeks away, we have this fine looking TF Sport team shirt on offer as the prize in a seriously difficult competition!

Simply follow us @The__Advantage on Twitter and retweet this post using the hashtag #TFSportComp to have your name go into our metaphorical hat to have a chance of winning this Ralph Lauren team wear shirt.

As with many things in life - you do have a choice in size and colour just so long as it is grey marl in a size XL! Its a great item to take along to the British GT paddock over the Easter weekend to kick start your attempt at the TF Sport Autograph Competition.

Just for info, the shirt measures approximately as a 46" chest, arm length of 20" and a length down the back of 30".

Terms and conditions 

This prize is for posting to a UK address only 
Winner chosen at random on Saturday 24th March so that delivery can be in time for the start of the first round at Oulton Park on the 31st March. 
Our decision is final - no alternative will be offered and neither will the garment be ironed prior to dispatch!

Monday, March 12, 2018 |
Team Brit offering a go in a race car!!

Team Brit offering a go in a race car!!

Want to win a spin round the track in one of cars? Fancy yourself as the next Team BRIT rookie driver? 
Team BRIT wants to actively encourage more people with disabilities to get involved in motorsports. 
We have teamed up with LimbPower to give one lucky person the chance to drive one of our Fun Cup cars around the track and meet our team of drivers. You'll be able to use our specially designed hand controls on our steering wheel - the most advanced in the world! 
If you are living with a disability and would like to enter, all you need to do is email us and in no more than 200 words, explain why you want to win the chance to drive with Team BRIT. Maybe you have always fancied yourself as the next Lewis Hamilton? Or you have consistently proved you can compete in other sports? Maybe you’ve been trying to find a physical activity where you can compete against able bodied competitors?
Not this race car unfortunately!
Just explain exactly why you want to drive with Team BRIT!! The best answer will be chosen by us and announced on social media. All entries need to be sent to sally@teambrit.co.uk no later than midnight GMT on 2nd April 2018. 
You must have a valid driving licence and be able to drive a car with adaptive hand controls. 
Full Terms and Conditions
1. You must be able to drive a car with adapted hand controls. Using foot pedals is not necessary and you can enter if you are unable to use car foot pedals. 
2. Applicants must be 18 years old or over. 
3. You must hold a valid UK driving licence
4. Your entry must be received no later than midnight on 2nd April 2018. 
5. Written entries will only be considered if sent by email to sally@teambrit.co.uk
6. This prize is not eligible for any exchange or alternative. 
7. Any entries over 200 words will not be eligible. 
8. The competition is open to UK residents only. 
9. You will be responsible for your own transportation to the track, however we will try to ensure you have access to a venue which is nearest and most convenient for you depending on our final schedule of planned track days. 
10. The winners will be judged by Team BRIT and decision is final. 
11. We do reserve the right to cancel such events at short notice 
12. The winner will be notified by email and/or DM on Twitter/Facebook and/or letter within 28 days of the closing date. If the winner cannot be contacted or do not claim the prize within 14 days of notification, we reserve the right to withdraw the prize from the winner and pick a replacement winner.
13. The winner agrees to the use of his/her name and image in any publicity material, as well as their entry. Any personal data relating to the winner or any other entrants will be used solely in accordance with current [UK] data protection legislation and will not be disclosed to a third party without the entrant’s prior consent.
14. By entering this competition, an entrant is indicating his/her agreement to be bound by these terms and conditions.
15. Only one entry per person. 
16. No responsibility can be accepted for entries not received for whatever reason.
17. By entering this competition, an entrant is indicating his/her agreement to be bound by these terms and conditions.
18. The promoter of the competition is Team BRIT, in partnership with LimbPower. 

Monday, March 12, 2018 |
AMR collective test ends in Portimao

AMR collective test ends in Portimao

Three days of intensive testing for about twenty or so Aston Martin Racing customer teams came to an end from the Algarve International Circuit in Portimao, Portugal today.

The idea was of course for them to complete copious amounts of dry, warmer weather testing (as opposed to that what would normally be available to them back home) and all under the watchful eye of the Prodrive factory and supplier technicians but unfortunately for them all, the weather in Portugal wasn't quite playing ball.

Two days of periodic torrential rainfall affected everyone's plans to a point of them having to sit out large parts of Thursday and Friday in the hope that the rain would clear, which it typically did on the final day of the test today!!

Usually this collective test is used by the factory World Endurance Championship squad to finalise their race plans and preparations ahead of the season opener which is usually at Silverstone in early April.

With extensive testing of the teams new V8 Vantage GTE having already been untaken it was strange to find out that there was minimal WEC related activity at the test with just Ross Gunn driving the new GTE Test car along with Mathias Lauda.

Although WEC factory drivers Darren Turner and Jonny Adam were at the test, they were only there for the first two days for the benefit of their British GT customer teams - Beechdean AMR and Optimum Motorsport respectively.

We understand that AMR's WEC drivers have all attended a corporate event today with the team and their new Partners Tag Heuer which was the main reason why both Sorensen and Thiim were permitted to skip British GT Media day on Thursday.

The bulk of the testing field was however made of V8 Vantage GT4's with teams participating including Whitebridge Motorsport, EDF Motorsport, 22GT and Academy Motorsport. Whilst some of these were teams returning to the annual event for the umpteenth time, others like Team Brit were new to the event and the marque so will have been keen to learn as much as they possibly could have.

Whilst some of these teams were testing for a specific series/championship, others were looking purely at a specific support event later in the year at Le Mans - hopefully more news on that in due course.

With the circuit also having been used by Aston Martin Lagonda immediately before the AMR Collective test, there was still a number of the new Vantage road cars and Vulcans about using the circuit alongside the GT3, GT4, DBRS9, GTE race cars.

News and information coming out from the test has again been annoyingly slow, but at the end of the day privacy is partly what these teams pay for so thats only to be expected. Final details of things like the liveries for the Beechdean AMR and Optimum British GT campaigns have still yet to be applied whilst Academy Motorsport's GT4 European Series driver line ups is also yet to be released.

They say that patience is a virtue!

Photos via social media accounts of respective teams

Saturday, March 10, 2018 |
British GT Media Day notes

British GT Media Day notes

Despite a confirmed full season entry of thirty six GT cars, Thursday's British GT Championship Media Day left for an emptier paddock than usual as an untimely diary clash led to the non-attendance of nearly half of the Aston Martin Racing entry.

2018 sees the return of Tom Ferrier, his TF Sport team and his two AMR V12 Vantage GT3 entries from gentlemen drivers Derek Johnston and Mark Farmer. Having unsuccessfully defended their GT3 title of 2016, they will be this year without regular Pro drivers Jonny Adam and Jon Barnes as the #17 and #11 cars will run a distinctly AMR driver line up as WEC factory drivers Marco Sorensen and Nicki Thiim join the party.

With the Danes sadly absent from the Media Day event due to factory commitments in Europe this weekend, driving duties and paddock chat were left down to Johnston, Farmer and a very excited expectant father in Ferrier to do.

"The offer of the two Danes was a no brainer" said Ferrier "and they're freckin fast as well" seemed to be the quote that stuck in our head!

On the track, the team sat out for most of the first session not wanting to risk anything around the cold and very wet Grand Prix circuit. Farmer claimed early season bragging rights by being the fastest of the pair throughout the day before aviation restrictions forced him to leave the circuit early to fly home in the remaining daylight - a strange excuse for the boss indeed!!

A very bullish Johnston was full of himself throughout the day, clearly looking forward to as season with Sorensen. Even a late and somewhat heavy 'off' in the final session wasn't enough to dampen his spirits after being spun around into the tyre wall by a slower GT4.

Media Day represented itself as the final day of testing for the TF Sport team ahead of the series opener at Oulton Park at the end of the month. Sorensen did apparently grab some last minute testing with the team at Oulton on Wednesday although the team didn't really want to elaborate too much on that. The damage to Johnston's car was enough to make it an insurance claim but many of the damaged parts had reached the end of the life and were due to be replaced anyway before the start of the season.

The only other Aston Martin Racing car at the track were series and AMR debutants Jetstream Motorsport and their #47 former Oman Racing V12 Vantage GT3. Donington was the first significant running of the car for this team having stepped up from a McLaren MP4-12C that they ran with great success in the GT Cup Champion last year.

Gentleman driver Graham Davidson looked at times like a rabbit staring in the oncoming headlights as he took everything in as well as meeting his new, AMR appointed WEC factory driver Maxime Martin for the first time in a race suit.

Stating that he'd only done about 10miles in shakedown before Media day, the differences in machinery and the slippery conditions on track were leading to a very steep learning curve for the Scot but was glad to have factory assistance with his new venture. For Martin, returning to Donington was his first since his Renault Megane days back in 2007 and was clearly looking forward to race against four of his AMR WEC colleagues although sim testing would be filling many of his spare days over the season.

Confirmed upon the entry but not present at the Media Day test were the Beechdean AMR V12 Vantage GT3 of Andrew Howard and Darren Turner, the Optimum Motorsport V12 Vantage GT3 of Flick Haigh and Jonny Adam and the two Academy Motorsport V8 Vantage GT4's of Matt Nichol-Jones/Will Moore and Jan Jonck/Tom Wood. They had all elected to attend the AMR Collective test in Portimao, Portugal all in the hope of some extended dry running conditions over the three day test.

Unfortunately for them, that was not to be as the first two days were affected by some torrential and persistent rain. Despite their AMR WEC factory commitments over the weekend both Turner and Adam did attended two days of the customer test to help their co-drivers respective co-drivers Howard and Haigh get up to speed having swapped platforms from what they raced in 2017.

We were hoping to see the new liveries applied to both of these GT3's but that sadly wasn't to be.

Academy Motorsport meanwhile have a very busy season ahead of them having had two cars confirmed now in both the British GT and the GT4 European Series for 2018. Will Moore has again be confirmed to be as returning to the team in BGT for 2018 whilst former MacMillan GT4 running Jan Jonck pairs up with Ginetta Junior graduate Tom Wood for his first experience of GT racing.

First round of the 2018 British GT Championship kicks off at its traditional Easter weekend venue of Oulton Park in Cheshire. Track action starts on the 31st March, misses out Easter Sunday for racing on the Bank Holiday Monday.

Game on ...............!!

In memory of Henry Hope-Frost


Saturday, March 10, 2018 |
Academy double up in both British and European GT4

Academy double up in both British and European GT4

Good times in GT4 racing are obviously here as the Worcester based Academy Motorsport double their entries in both the British GT and GT4 European Championships for the 2018 campaign.

With final detail of their British GT entries finally confirmed at Donington Park yesterday, the team will field a car for new young guns Jan Jonck and Tom Wood whilst team boss Matt Nichol-Jones will again share a car alongside team returnee Will Moore.

Missing both series Media Day test day's yesterday by virtue of being at the Aston Martin Racing collective test from a rather soggy Portimao circuit in Portugal, the team have also been confirmed tonight as having two entries in the parallel SRO European GT4 Series with an (as yet) un-named driver line up.

The team have also purchased one of the Street Art Racing V8 Vantage GT4's over the winter months which they presently have with them down in Portugal for testing alongside a third car.

Street Art Racing meanwhile were at the series rain soaked test at Zolder yesterday and have a single car entry now confirmed for the European series having run a car in each of the (as then) Northern and Southern Cups. The 2018 GT4 European series will field a capacity grid of 47 cars.

Friday, March 09, 2018 |
Mitchell to join Gunn in China

Mitchell to join Gunn in China

Whilst at the British GT Media Day yesterday we learned that former MacMillan Racing driver Jack Mitchell will indeed be racing in China during 2018.

Have deputised for Aston Martin Racing's Ross Gunn at the final round of the 2017 China GT Championship with the China Equity AMR team, Mitchell obviously made enough of an impression with the team to be asked to return to them alongside Ross Gunn for a full season of racing in 2018.

With the Chinese racing market still expanding, we understand that Prodrive have built a further number of brand new V8 Vantage GT4 cars that will be sent over to China both for China Equity AMR and other. Being a Pro/Am class, both Mitchell and Gunn will compete in separate China Equity AMR cars with as yet un-named co-drivers for the twelve race series.

The first of those long haul flights for them will be towards the end of April in readiness for the series Official Test at the Beijing Goldensport International Circuit with the first round of the championship just three weeks later from Zhuhai.

Photo credits - China GT

Friday, March 09, 2018 |
'Son of Billie' confirmed for Australian GT

'Son of Billie' confirmed for Australian GT

Former Australian Ute racer Jeremy Gray has confirmed the entry of his new Bilstein sponsored Aston Martin Racing V8 Vantage GT4 in the Australian GT Championship for 2018.

Having secured the former Academy Motorsport car from Miedecke Stone Motorsport early last year, Gray has undertaken several national class races acclimatising himself with the car alongside Andrew Miedecke.

Apparently preparing the car himself, Gray will start his 2018 season firmly under the national spotlight at the Australian Grand Prix event from Albert Park at the end of the month whist in the longer endurance races, he will again share the car with Andrew Miedecke.

Globally rekindling the association between the two brands last seen in Europe on the affectionately named V12 Vantage GT3, Gray said “We’ve had it over here for the last 12 months just testing and getting familiar with the car, Bilstein has come on board, so the car looks quite good at this stage, and Bilstein is right behind it".

We wish him all the best!

Photo credits - AUS GT / MSM

Friday, March 09, 2018 |
TF Sports new British GT liveries finally released

TF Sports new British GT liveries finally released

With all the attending cars now safely stowed away for the night at Donington Park, TF Sport have finally confirmed the livery designs for both of their Aston Martin RacingV12 Vantage in readiness for tomorrow's British GT Championship Media Day.

Continuing the team's hexagonal theme of last year, both #11 and #17 cars will incorporate that design format in their individual blue and black respectively colour scheme as kind of given away at their first test of the pre-season at Donington earlier in February.

Its chrome blue and spearmint theme for the #11 car of Mark Farmer and Nicki Thiim whilst the #17 car of Derek Johnston and Marco Sorenson will feature a matt black body with chrome silver and red decals.

Announcements and action starts at 08:00 tomorrow with free access for the general public. Just too bad the Danes won't be there!!

Photo credits - TF Sport

Wednesday, March 07, 2018 |
Tag Heuer to partner Aston Martin Racing

Tag Heuer to partner Aston Martin Racing

Aston Martin and Aston Martin Racing today announced that Swiss luxury watch company TAG Heuer will become their official watch partner, bringing together two of the most iconic luxury brands in motor racing.

The two companies, although producing uniquely different products, share many common values, including knowing how to utilise motorsport as an extreme test bed for their performance products. Both partners have extensive roots and experience in motorsport, reaching back through the decades and share an affiliation with the Aston Martin Red Bull Racing F1TM team. In the world of endurance sports car racing, TAG Heuer branding will appear on the brand new Aston Martin Vantage GTE race cars when the FIA World Endurance Championship gets underway at Spa-Francorchamps in May.

Off track, both brands are innovative with their product design and their creative teams of designers continually enjoy pushing the boundaries to produce unique products every time. Both are renowned for the fine detail in their craftsmanship and build quality that their loyal customers can always count on.

Aston Martin President and Chief Executive Officer, Dr Andy Palmer, said: “This is an exciting partnership for Aston Martin. Both brands have teams of brilliant designers and when two talented teams of designers collaborate like this, incredible things are created. Both of us understand the importance of beautiful bespoke craftsmanship and the importance of peak performance so we already have many common values. Of course, we also both love racing and testing our products to the limit in a competitive environment. I hope this new partnership brings us all a lot of success both on and off the track.”

Chief Executive Officer of TAG Heuer and President of LVMH Group Watches Division, Jean-Claude Biver, echoed Palmer’s excitement about the new partnership: “Aston Martin has the same genetic make-up as TAG Heuer: luxury, quality, beautiful products, innovation, history, emotion and performance. We are therefore delighted to be able to work with such a prestigious brand that shares our passion for cars. This collaboration will bring forth a wealth of amazing synergies that will strengthen TAG Heuer's position as an avant-garde luxury watch brand with a leading position in the automotive sector.”

The two brands going forward will develop a collection of watches encompassing all aspects of motor racing including the World Endurance Championship series. Aston Martin and Aston Martin Racing TAG Heuer watches, will be marketed through the TAG Heuer global distribution network and at Aston Martin dealer network and brand centres in London and Tokyo. With two brands that are renowned for performance, precision and craftsmanship, the first product to be borne of this new partnership will be highly-anticipated.

Source material - Aston Martin
Tuesday, March 06, 2018 |
Hud-Motorsport looking to emulate their success of last year

Hud-Motorsport looking to emulate their success of last year

Perhaps one of the most successful Aston Martin Racing customer teams of 2017 was Hud-Motorsport who collected a staggering twenty six podium finishes spread between two series in their Aston Martin Racing V12 Vantage GT3.

With team boss Nigel Hudson and co driver Adam Wilcox having experienced some 'difficulties' in their transition between their former Audi R8 and the new AMR Vantage GT3 during the pre-season stage last year, that was soon put behind them as they ended the year with the following results.

GT Cup

5x First Place finishes
10x Second Place finishes
4x Third Place finishes
3x DNF's


3x First Place finishes
3x Second Place finishes
1x Third Place finishes

Tomorrow should see the team return to the track with their first test of 2018 at Donington having confirmed their participation in the GT Cup series this morning.

Photo credits - Hud-Motorsport
Monday, March 05, 2018 |
Al Harthy lays out his 2018 ambitions in Blancpain Silver Cup

Al Harthy lays out his 2018 ambitions in Blancpain Silver Cup

Reigning Blancpain Endurance Cup Pro-Am Champion, Ahmad Al Harthy officially launched his Oman Racing Team’s 2018 motor racing programme in Muscat this morning.

Returning to the world’s biggest GT endurance racing championship for a sixth season, the Muscat sportsman will compete in the new Silver Cup class – his driver grading having been changed from Bronze to Silver following last year’s title win – with his trusty Aston Martin V12 Vantage GT3 car.

Oman Racing’s entry will once again be engineered and prepared by British squad TF Sport, with a three driver line-up confirmed for the new campaign. Joining Al Harthy will be Euan McKay, who contested one event with Oman Racing last year, and team newcomer Charlie Eastwood.

Officially confirming his 2018 plans today Al Harthy said: “We come into 2018 off the back of an absolutely incredible season last year for Oman Racing. To win the Pro-Am championship in Blancpain was a dream come true, especially in the 10th anniversary year of Oman Racing. It was the culmination of so much hard work.

“Now we have an exciting new challenge awaiting us this year and it’s one we’re all very much looking forward to. As ever, the level of competition is going to be extremely high and the Silver Cup will be a very closely contested championship. It’s important for me to continue to progress, so racing in the Silver Cup is another step-up made possible by my incredible partners.”

Having been partnered by Aston Martin ‘works’ driver Jonny Adam to the memorable Pro-Am championship triumph last year, the next chapter of Al Harthy’s Blancpain career now opens with two new team-mates.

Euan McKay and Charlie Eastwood both make the move into full-time GT endurance racing from the Porsche Carrera Cup GB Championship, where Al Harthy himself was Pro-Am1 Champion in 2012. While McKay isn’t completely new to the Oman Racing team, he competed with the squad in the Gulf 12 Hours in December, Eastwood – the 2017 Porsche Carrera Cup GB Champion – debuts.

“Euan obviously raced with the team in the Gulf 12 Hours last year and he did a fantastic job on our way to a podium finish, so it’s wonderful he is with us for the full season in Blancpain”, added Al Harthy, “Charlie more than proved his talent in Porsche Carrera Cup GB, so I’m really looking forward to racing with him. I think we have a very strong, competitive and exciting driver line-up.”

Source material - Oman Racing PR
Monday, March 05, 2018 |