Brands Hatch Indy - 6th July 2013

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Andrew Williamson
Customer Programmes Manager
Tel: +44 (0) 1295 273 355
Email: awilliamson@astonmartinracing.com


 

 

Race Report & Results

Qualifying

Qualifying got underway under clear and bright conditions. The temperature was already climbing as the lights went green at 10:58am for the 30 minute session.

BTCC regular Tom Onslow-Cole immediately showed his experience of the Brands Hatch Indy circuit, posting a time of 51.1 seconds in the #46 Mardi Gras GT4. This time was eventually improved upon by his rivals, but this time was good enough for 3rd place on the grid, a great effort in the smaller, 4.3L engine car.

The session was halted due to the #76 Aston Martin St Gallen car spinning at Paddock Hill and hitting the barrier. Fortunately, Florian Kamelger whom was driving at the time was un hurt. The car came of worse, and heavy rear damage meant that they would take no further part in the weekend's races.

Once the session restarted at 11:20am, there was a frantic rush of cars on track as the 2nd drivers all tried to get their regulation 3 laps in the car. Heavy traffic on the 1.2 mile circuit meant that a clean lap was always going to be difficult. At the flag it was Mark Lemmer in the #88 Barwell Motorsport car who was on top, with a time of 50.640s. Mark was run close however by Tim Eakin in the Hills Racing #56, only 0.421s back in second.

Race

The race got underway at 16.40 under gloriously sunny conditions. In the opening laps, Onslow Cole in the #46 made a position and set about chasing Lemmer in the #88, who bolted away at the start. On lap 9, Kenneth Greenberg in the #67 Stratton Motorsport car pitted with suspected engine maladies. An ECU result seemed to clear the issue, and he was back on his way again, however this stop was outside of the window, so he would need to pit again for his mandatory 2 minute pit stop.

In the early stages, Tim Eakin was enjoying a great fight with Olivier Bouche in the #22 Stratton car, with Tim driving a good defensive race to maintain 3rd position. By lap 18, Lemmer had pulled gap of 2.9s over Onslow-Cole, Mark was clearly trying as the rear of the car looked very lively in places, the high temperatures helping to exacerbate this lack of rear grip.

 

The Brands Indy circuit was creating close fights right throughout the field, Mike Brown in the #7 and Bolaji Odunsi in the #20 getting very close on occasion, but the dice was always fair and clean. Eakin’s good run in the #56 came to an abrupt end at Druids on lap 33. Tim made contact with Greenberg in the #67 as he tried to lap the Canadian. Kenneth gave Tim room, however the silver Hills Racing car understeered, leading to a clash of wheels. #67 was forced to retire and a very long pit stop to repair the damage also ruled the #56 car out of strong result. A real shame after another great qualifying performance by Tim & Richard.

The pit window opened on lap 34, and once in the #27 Track Club car, Calum Lockie set fastest lap with a 50.713. Mark Lemmer dropped down the order due to a pit stop time penalty for being a Silver graded driver, promoting Pierre Mantello, now driving the #22, in to the lead. Patrick Blakeney-Edwards spun in the #68 car on the exit of Paddock Hill bend and for a while was unable to get going again. Eventually the car was able to rejoin, without the need for a safety car. John Dickson in the #47 Stratton car, made contact with Julian Reddyhough, (having taken over from Onslow-Cole) at Graham Hill bend. The impact broke an engine mount on the #5, bringing to an end a great run in the older spec car.

While all this had been going on, Chris Kemp in the #24 Vantage Racing car had been making progress up the field after qualifying in 7th. By lap 99, Chris was all over the back of the #88 Barwell car, now being driven by Jan Andersen. A lap later, Kemp found a way past for 2nd place. Jan responded and remained in touch, finishing just over 2s back in 3rd.The win was taken by Olivier Bouche and Pierre Mantello, once again proving their class in amongst a grid of new cars and drivers.TV Chef James Martin and his co driver Owen Mildenhall took a strong top ten result after limited running in practice.

The high ambient temperature certainly took its toll on the drivers (most driving without air conditioning). With such a busy lap and lots of traffic, even finishing the race was a massive achievement.

The next round of the GT4 Challenge of Great Britain takes place at Spa on July 26 & 27. Anyone interested in hospitality passes to attend as a spectator/guest or competing in the race on an ‘arrive and drive’ basis with Stratton Motorsport should go to www.astonmartin.com/gt4challenge for further information.

Image Gallery

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Andrew Williamson
Tel: +44 (0) 1295 273 355
Email: awilliamson@astonmartinracing.com