TF-Sport claim a second win in GT3 while BMW victorious in GT4 with back-to-back wins.
Starting from pole and with no success pitstop penalties, the RJN Motorsport Nissan made good in the early part of the race. Second place was the TF-Sport of Farmer until he got turned round by Graham Davidson in the Jetstream Motorsport Aston Martin and earned Davidson a stop/go penalty. This meant that Sanchez in the Nissan now had 16s lead as the first round of pitstops taking place around the 60 minute mark.
TF-Sport brought in the #17 sister Aston Martin early so that Marco Sorenson could take over from Derek Johnston and put in some fast laps to leap-frog the Nissan. To add the woes of driving the Nissan around Silverstone, Straun Moore's seat mechanism had slipped backwards meaning his feet were further away from the pedals. This meant an early stop for the mechanics to fix and all but end their hopes of a win.
Nicki Thiim was making good ground in the #11 TF-Sport Aston Martin and was now into third behind Sorensen and Keen in the Barwell Lamborghini, a result of Adam Christodoulou's Team ABBA Racing Mercedes-AMG retirement due to right front suspension failure. The Dane then was in the lead as the next round of stops were happening as the #11 Aston stopped later than those around them.
Due to the success penalties from Snetterton, the #11 Aston had to stop for an extra 10s (courtesy of finishing third) as the final round of stops. The TF-Sport Aston had that advantage over the Barwell Motorsport Lamborghini and when they both pitted at the same time it was down to the mechanics to service quickly and a speedy exit when the stopwatch indicated time up on the penalty. The TF-Sport managed to turn the Aston Martin round so that it was just able to beat the Lamborghini and into the lead until the flag.
Keen in the Lamborghini now had his attention to his mirrors and the Optimum Motorsport Aston Martin of Jonny Adam. Starting from sixth on the grid the Optimum Aston had slowly made progress and now challenging for second.
Last year's winners Rick Parfitt Jnr and Seb Morris were back together again in the Team Parker Racing Bentley. Parfitt Jnr's team mate Ryan Ratcliffe suffered from food poisoning on race day and last minute call went to Morris. It was so last minute that Morris arrived at the circuit just in time to jump into the Bentley after Parfitt Jnr had already started from the back of the GT3 because of the driver change and then had to do it all again after spinning. Morris behind the wheel had incurred a post-race two-place penalty as he had infringed the yellow flags.
GT4 pole sitter Equipe Verschuur suffered huge bad luck as they had to retire the McLaren in the final hour due to suspension failure after leading the field by a massive 35s. This meant that Snetterton victors #42 Century Motorsport with Tuck and Green now enjoyed the lead from starting sixth.
Due to the success penalties at the final round of pitstop the #42 BMW had to wait longer before leaving the pits. This meant that the sister BMW of Mitchell and Schjerpen, which started back in 13th on the grid, was now out in front.
Two out of the three Tolman Motorsport McLaren's had retired from the race, but the third McLaren with Jordan Albert and Lewis Proctor finished second, despite a 15s success penalty. Proctor at the start made a great getaway from seventh on the grid and into first, but was soon back to second as Hutchison recovered from a very poor start. This is where they remained with other strategies playing out around them.
The battle for that last step of the podium was finally resolved in the final laps. Tuck in his BMW was in the prime seat for that last step, but Nicoll-Jones in his Academy Motorsport Aston Martin claimed that spot. Nicoll-Jones was on course for that, but three laps to go Matthiessen had other ideas in his HHC Motorsport Ginetta. The Dane had already got past Tuck and was chasing down Nicoll-Jones. Matthiesen made a move at Luffield which resulted in contact with the Aston and a sprint to the line. The HHC Motorsport Ginetta won the drag race, but positions were reversed post-race.
The next race is at Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium.
Words: Ian Cutting
Pictures: Ian Cutting Photography