A glorious Snetterton welcomed British GT and a race one win for a dominant TF Sports Mark Farmer and Nicki Thiim after the duo’s powerhouse performance in qualifying put the duo on pole in both races.
Race One: While pole sitter Ben Tuck of Century Motorsport dominated the first period in GT4, it was a bad start for Aleksander Schjerpen in the #43 Century Motorsport M4, pitting on the first lap with a tyre issue.
The race quickly settled but it was an impromptu early stop for #99 Beechdean Aston Martin of Andrew Howard after just 4 laps with two punctures due to contact with Flick Haigh and Jonny Adams Aston Martin, which later resulted in the duo receiving a 30 second penalty dropping them down the race order. The #86 Steller Performance Toyota GT86 of Dean Macdonald and Alex Quinn was also an early retirement with engine issues.
Back in the race the #47 Aston Martin of Graham Davidson and the #1 Bentley of Rick Parfitt Jnr passed Minshaw, Farmers #11 Aston Martin dropping back into 4th place. Then began a prolonged safety car period after the Balfe Motorsport McLaren of Graham Johnson and Mike Robinson drew to a halt after earlier contact.
Almost everyone pitted when the pit window opened still under the safety car, which caused a few infingements and subsequent penalties. Nicki Thiim was first out of the pits and at the end of the safety car period took a strong lead ahead of Maxime Martin and Phil Keen behind him and Ryan Ratcliffe in tenth place.
The battling at the the top of the field continued but it was TF Sports Nicki Thiim who was matchless and continued to dominate bringing the Aston Martin home ahead of Maxime Martin and Phil Keen in 3rd place.
Meanwhile in GT4 Matthew George took an unexpected lead in the #44 Invictus Games Racing Jaguar, a place that would cost them a stop go penalty after serving a too short pit stop that had handed him the lead.
There was also stop go penalties for #53 and #54 UltraTek Racing Teams Nissans for pit lane infringements, moving Charlie Fagg in the #4 McLaren into the lead, however after fighting to hold off Joe Osborne, by fractions of a second it was the Tolman Motorsport duo of David Pattison and Osborne that eventually took the lead and win in GT4 putting Will Moore and Matt Nicoll-Jones into 3rd place
Race two saw another fantastic win for TF Sport with Derek Johnston and Marco Sorenson taking the top step of the podium, topping a great weekend for the Surrey based squad. While the honours in GT4 went to Ben Tuck and Ben Green in their maiden British GT win in the BMW M4.
The race began with Ben Barnicoat in the #72 Track-Club McLaren needing recovery in the first lap, bringing out the safety car, which hampered Nicki Thiims chances of building a lead. Thiim continued to do battle with Sorenson holding a lead of just 2 seconds however the success penalty served at the halfway point put Thiim and Farmer behind Darren Turner and Andrew Howard now running in second place with Derek Johnston not relenting to pressure by Turner, the order in the top three remaining as the chequered flag fell.
Meanwhile Jon Minshaw went into battle with Flick Haigh, Haigh eventually moving into fourth place leaving Minshaw at the mercy of #47 Jetstream Motorsport Aston Martin which his the #33 Lamborghini sending Minshaw spinning, a move that saw Jetstream receive a 30 second penalty and Minshaw eventually finishing in fifth place.
GT4 saw some excellent close racing in the opening stint, Nicoll-Jones out in front until Jack Mitchell in the #43 Century Motorsport BMW took the lead. When the pit window opened, penalties and pit times changed the order Tolman Motorsports David Pattison in the #56 McLaren taking the lead, but eventually dropping back down the order into fourth place with Ben Green and Ben Tuck taking the win, Academy Motorsports Lewis Proctor and Jordan Albert in second and Balfe Motorsports Matt Nicoll-Jones and Will Moore in third place.
British GT continues at Silverstone on June 9th and 10th, where Invictus Racings Matthew George will be racing the squads Jaguar as well as Generation AMR Super Racing Aston Martin alongside James Holder in the Blue Riband Event, a huge undertaking that will see George essentially driving for the entire three hour race.
Images ©Andy Fitzpatrick ©Allison Remzi
British GT Snetterton