Triple Aston Martin podium at opening round of new British endurance Championship

Sunday, March 13, 2022


It was to be a rather successful opening round of the new for 2022 British Endurance Championship season for the four Aston Martin race teams at Silverstone yesterday as three brought home class podium finishes by the end of the opening three-hour event.

The #6 Venture Innovation Aston Martin Vulcan of Gleb Stepanov and Stephen Tompkins was the highest of the four after Qualifying, finishing P3 overall and P1 in it’s a Class ahead of an early Saturday afternoon start.

The T7 Motorsport Aston Martin Racing V8 Vantage GT4 of Peter Montague and Stuart Hall also fared well during the earlier 30-minute session finishing up P15 overall/P1 in its class with the #33 Infinity Racing with Team Brit AMR of Dale and Mark Albutt not too far behind in P22/P3. GT race debutants Luke Pound and Andy Tucker completed the quartet bringing home their Team Brit Vantage GT4 P23/P4 ahead of the race.

Fortunately avoiding the scattered rain showers that affected their test day at the circuit on Friday, Saturdays opening round would be run on a dry track but with still a stiff breeze blowing across the former wartime airfield circuit. 

With Stepanov taking the start within his now brightly coloured AM Vulcan, he would briefly take the lead of the race overall after a calculated move down the inside into Stowe on the opening lap but by the end of that lap, but he would have to settle for P2 overall for the remainder of his stint. Come the chequered flag, Tomkins will have driven a stellar two-hour race to recover back from P8 overall after their first stop to eventually finish P2 overall and in class but a full lap down to the eventual winners.

The #33 AMR of Mark and Dale Albutt would however have a torrid start to the race with Albutt Snr spinning out coming onto the Wellington Straight on only the second lap, bringing out the Safety Car in the process but fortunately being able to continue apparently further unaffected for the remainder of the race. They would finish the race P5 in class albeit six laps down to their stablemates ahead.

The old and new versions of the AMR Vantage GT4 of T7 Motorsport and Team Brit would have a fantastic battle together, jockeying for position relative to one another as the driver stops and mandatory pit stops cycled through.

Despite the age differences between cars as well the physical abilities of the drivers behind the wheel, the Team Brit Aston of Andy Tucker was able to keep former AMR works driver Stuart Hall ‘honest’ and firmly stuck behind him before Hall’s ultimate ability eventually allowed him passed, building a large gap until the chequered flag.

Unfortunately for the #50 T7 Motorsport team however, two pit lane speed limit transgressions gave them a 42 second post-race penalty and with only 39 seconds between the #50 and the #68 Team Brit car behind at the flag – that gave the class win to the #68 car at the first time of asking with the #50 car crew graciously accepting a race defeat with a P2 finish instead.

The next round of the Championship is at Oulton Park on April 2nd.

Photo credits – BEC / Steve Jackman
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