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Britcar Silverstone Round-up

Victories for VR Motorsport Praga R1T and FF Corse Ferrari and a very wind swept Silverstone.

Race 1

Starting from the front, VR Motorsport Praga R1T spun away their advantage on the green flag lap and ended up at the back of the field. This left Ross Wylie in his Class 2 Ferrari 488 to lead when the lights went out as storm Hannah blew in across the circuit.

Unlike in previous years, Wylie couldn't pull out an easy advantage as his Ferrari is now Class 2 and had a couple of Class 1 Sakers behind him, Paul Rose and Chris Hart, along with fellow Class 2 Saker of David Brise.

Rose in his Saker had to pit with an electrical problem, returned to the action but retired after 11 laps. The Track Focused Ferrari 488 was also already out of the race due to heat going back into the engine compartment as a result of modifications made as the Ferrari had already failed the noise test earlier in the day.

Back out front, Wylie was still in the lead but not by much. The Praga, after the earlier spin, was cutting through the traffic and now chasing the top 6 and by lap 7 he was duly challenging Wayne Marrs for that position.

The first of the top 6 to make the mandatory stop was Paul Bailey in his 488 Ferrari and handing driving duties over to Andy Schultz. The quicker drivers of the various pairs made the most of the time allowed behind the wheel before handing over to their respective team mates within the 12 minute pitstop window.

Wylie handed driving duties over to David Mason and they now enjoyed a 21 second lead over ALP Racing Saker of Alan Purbrick who had taken over from Brise. The Praga with Tim Gray was chasing them down fast. Gray made short work of the Saker and was closing at an astonishing 14 seconds in a lap on Mason. Even a drive-through penalty for the Praga didn't change the outcome of the race. At the flag the Praga had come through from last to first with an advantage of 45 seconds over second place. Purbrick though was driving a wounded Saker with gearbox issues and started to fall behind. It was the Ferrari of Bailey and Andy Schultz who finally ended up second with Wayne Marrs and Charlie Hollings completing the podium in their Ferrari who had both overtaken Wylie.

Class 3 honours finally went to the Valluga Porsche 911of Adam Hatfield and Ian Humphries after a great battle with rival Porsche of Mark and Peter Cunningham.

Over in Class 4 Sam Neary was leading quite comfortably before handing duties over to dad Richard. Unfortunately Neary Snr. ended up in the gravel at Luffield. The car was removed under waved yellows and as he stayed in the car was able to get back to the pits to see what the damage was and to remove the gravel. A class win gone. Instead honours went to Sam Alpass in the Geoff Steel BMW M3. The podium was completed by Tim Docker in his Maximum Motorsport VW Golf and Ashley Woodman in his SEAT Cupra. Docker claimed that second place from Woodman on the very last lap of the race.

Race 1 winner VR Motorsport Praga R1T. Source: Frank Mead (Chequered Images)

Race 2

After suffering gearbox issues in race 1 the ALP Racing Saker wouldn't be taking part in the race, while the Team ABBA BMW GTR would be starting from the pit lane after their incident in race 1 which was caused the by the accelerator/brake pedals being too close.

As the lights finally went out, Chris Hart in the Saker stormed through to lead the race from row 5. Another who had a great start was birthday boy Sam Neary who was now up to ninth as the crossed the line making up 14 places in that opening lap. Hart's lead only lasted for 3 laps before Ross Wylie took the lead in his Ferrari. A lap later Hart was back another place as the VR Motorsport Praga of Alastair Boulton made his move.

Marrs and Bailey pitted from fourth and fifth respectively to make their pitstops early to maximise the driving time for their pro-drivers. Couple laps later Boulton made his stop to hand over to Tim Gray, but the Praga made another pitstop just into Gray's stint with damage to the rear wing which couldn't be repaired and they had to retire the car.

Race leader Wylie left it as late as possible to hand the Ferrari over to David Mason and Mark Cunningham in the Porsche did likewise. By now, courtesy of pitstops, the Saker of Chris Hart was out in front. Unfortunately for them, they had exceeded the maximum amount of time a driver can do behind the wheel, 60% of a race, a penalty was awaiting them. To make matters worse they were also having vibration issues from a broken front splitter. When Steve Harris took over they also had to undertake a drive-through penalty for a refuelling infringement. They also suffered a puncture and finally had to take that penalty for exceeding driving time.

Back out front, Mason's lead was shrinking from fellow FF Corse Ferrari of Charlie Hollings. With fifteen minutes left on the clock, Hollings made his move and into the lead. Mason's second place soon became third as Andy Schultz made a move. This is how it finished at the flag after 27 laps of racing. Marrs and Hollings enjoying a 10 second gap over Schultz who was in turn half a lap ahead of Mason and Wylie.

Fourth overall was the Class 4 BMW GTR of Team ABBA Racing, courtesy of a storming drive by Sam and others falling by the wayside.

Class 3 winners was the Porsche of Adam Hatfield and Ian Humphries, again, embroiled in a race long battle with fellow Class 3 Porsche of the Cunningham's.

Race 2 winner FF Corse Ferrari 488. Source: Frank Mead (Chequered Images)

Racing will resume again 11th May along the Brands Hatch Indy circuit.


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