A busy fortnight of motorsport to look forward to (Part 1)

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

It will soon be time to pull up a comfortable chair, get some of your favourite snacks to hand together with a few examples of your favourite beverage as we approach the start of a completely bonkers period from motor racing in Europe over the next couple of weeks.

First up this weekend and marking the start to the SRO's Speed Week is the fifth round of the British GT Championship at its annual pilgrimage to the home of motor racing in Belgium at the Circuit de Spa Francorchamps.

Nearly a month has passed since the last round of the British national GT Championship from Donington Park and this time around there are forty one cars waiting to have a bash around the most challenging of circuits that Europe can offer for Sunday's two hour race.

There are a few changes - firstly, the British GT race is running as the main event on Sunday 21st July rather than in support of the Fun Cup 24hr race (that was held last weekend), Sunday's race will now be live streamed for the first time via the usual SRO social media outlets and we have a few more interlopers amongst the grid to boot.

Beechdean AMR are of course missing from this event as Andrew Howard and Ross Gunn will be racing at the Le Mans Cup event in Barcelona on the same weekend but their place in the #TeamAMR grid has been taken up by the brand new M2 Competition AMR Vantage GT3 car of former Australian GT owner and now just racer Tony Quinn who in turn will be supported by AMR factory driver Darren Turner.

The remaining three AMR Vantage GT3 crews from TF Sport and Optimum Motorsport remain the same but given the recent wins in BGT and GT Open for Messrs. Adam, Davidson and Wilkinson respectively, you will be assured that both of those cars will be fancying their chances. That leaves Mark Farmer and Nicki Thiim who can hopefully rekindle something special between themselves over a cool beer and portion of the customary frites and mayonnaise having had something of a difficult experience together again this season.

In GT4 we should have the usual choice of seven AMR Vantage GT4's from TF Sport, Optimum and Academy Motorsport. The latter will have been busy mending and re-fettling their two cars after the latest round of the GT4 European Series from Zandvoort whilst the two TF Sport cars have enjoyed a recent test day at the circuit earlier last week.

In the Championship stakes, a further podium from Ash Hand and Tom Canning in their #97 car at Donington has brought them back into contention in the Silver Cup Class whereas a good points haul for both Mike Robinson and Patrik Matthiesen has finally ignited their first season together. For the remaining Patrick Kibble/Josh Price, Micah Stanley/Ben Hurst, Alex Toth-Jones/Will Moore and Connor O'Brien/Jack Butel partnerships - all will be hoping to rid themselves of the terrible misfortune and bad luck that has so far blighted their season with there still be time to make a Championship impact between them!

The remaining GT4 meanwhile of Beechdean AMR's Kelvin Fletcher and Martin Plowman continue to excel together in the Pro-Am Championship which they presently lead by twenty points with three races (6 hours of track time) to go!

The #47 TF Sport GT3 car of Davidson and Adam is the only AMR to have an extended pit stop success penalty of 20 seconds applied due to their race win last time out at Donington.


Saturday 20 July

09:00 – 10:00: Free Practice 1
11:20 – 12:20: Free Practice 2
15:10 – 15:20: Qualifying – GT3 Am
15:27 – 15:37: Qualifying – GT3 Pro
15:44 – 15:54: Qualifying – GT4 Am
16:01 – 16:11: Qualifying – GT4 Pro

Sunday 21 July

09:00 – 09:10: Warm-up
12:30 – 14:30: Race

Photo credits - Steve Jackman / Jacob Ebrey

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