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Ecurie Ecosse and TF Sport share British GT GT3 poles, ISSY takes GT4

Saturday, August 22 2015

The title-leading Ecurie Ecosse BMW and the TF Sport Aston Martin shared the GT3 pole positions for this weekend's rounds of the Avon Tyres British GT Championship at Snetterton today (Saturday). Meanwhile ISSY Racing celebrated a double pole position in the GT4 class with their Lotus Evora.

The session kicked off with the GT3 Amateur drivers and a strong lap from Andrew Jarman in the TF Sport Aston Martin continued the team's form from practice, but Ross Wylie bettered his time by nearly half a second.

Next time around Ahmad Al Harthy moved the Oman Racing Team into provisional pole position, ahead of Jarman, who had overhauled Wylie on his second flying lap. On his third he returned to the top of the table by just under three hundredths of a second. Just Wylie was left to respond but he was unable to improve. This left three Aston Martins at the top of the times, with the two Oman Racing Team cars behind the TF Sport Vantage. Wylie was best of the rest in the VonRyan Racing McLaren, ahead of title challenger Andrew Howard for Beechdean, making it four Vantages in the top five.

Avon Tyres British GT Championship GT3 Am Qualifying
1, Andrew Jarman, TF Sport, Aston Martin Vantage GT3, 1:50.124s
2, Ahmad Al Harthy, Oman Racing Team, Aston Martin Vantage, GT3, +0.026s
3, Liam Griffin, Oman Racing Team, Aston Martin Vantage, GT3, +0.056s
4, Ross Wylie, VonRyanRacing, McLaren 650S, GT3, +0.388s
5, Andrew Howard, Beechdean AMR, Aston Martin Vantage, GT3, +0.415s

The initial advantage in the GT3 Pro session was with title leader Alexander Sims, lapping the Ecurie Ecosse BMW Z4 almost half a second quicker than Jonny Adam's Beechdean Aston Martin. Proving that the Z4s were a match for the Vantages, Joe Osborne placed the Triple Eight BMW in third, and the order remained until the chequered flag.

It was a bad session for Jody Fannin in the TF Sport car that topped the opening session. He hit the barriers on his lap and pitted with damage. With just over a minute remaining, the car would fail to set a flying lap.

By contrast, Phil Keen jumped into the newly-repaired Team Russia Z4 at the end of the session and took an excellent sixth place, just 1.379 seconds off pole position. Matt Bell in the TF Sport Aston Martin and Mike Simpson in the Team LNT Ginetta headed the BMW.

Avon Tyres British GT Championship GT3 Pro Qualifying
1, Alexander Sims, Barwell Motorsport/Ecurie Ecosse, BMW Z4, GT3, 1:47.408s
2, Jonny Adam, Beechdean AMR, Aston Martin Vantage, GT3, +0.470s
3, Joe Osborne, Triple Eight Racing, BMW Z4, GT3, +0.732s
4, Matt Bell, TF Sport, Aston Martin Vantage, GT3, +1.052s
5, Mike Simpson, Team LNT, Ginetta, GT3, +1.284s

Oz Yusuf set the GT4 Am pace in the ISSY Racing Lotus Evora, and went almost a second quicker on the next lap. His closest challenge came from Fulvio Mussi in the Fox Motorsport Ginetta, which was half a second adrift, but a similar amount faster than the Academy Motorsport Aston Martin.

Fourth place was taken by the title-leading Beechdean Aston Martin in the hands of Jamie Chadwick, with Graham Johnson fifth in the Optimum Ginetta.

Avon Tyres British GT Championship GT4 Am Qualifying
1, Oz Yusuf, ISSY Racing, Lotus Evora, GT4, 1:59.725s
2, Fulvio Mussi, Fox Motorsport, Ginetta G55, GT4, +0.540s
3, Will Moore, Academy Motorsport, Aston Martin Challenge, GT4, +1.034s
4, Jamie Chadwick, Beechdean AMR, Aston Martin Challenge, GT4, +1.092s
5, Graham Johnson, PMW Expo Racing/Optimum Motorsport, Ginetta G55, GT4, +1.105s

Gavan Kershaw lapped Snetterton almost a second quicker than Yusuf in his first flying lap in the GT4 Pro session, heading Dennis Strandberg's Academy Aston Martin by six tenths of a second, before Tolman's Luke Davenport bettered the Lotus by just over a tenth.

Next time around Kershaw beat the Tolman Ginetta by just over a quarter of a second, and Mike Robinson took the third-quickest time in the Optimum Motorsport Ginetta. On his penultimate lap, Davenport closed the gap on Kershaw, but there were no further improvements.

Avon Tyres British GT Championship GT4 Pro Qualifying
1, Gavan Kershaw, ISSY Racing, Lotus Evora, GT4, 1:58.258s
2, Luke Davenport, Tolman Motorsport LTD, Ginetta G55, GT4, +0.042s
3, Mike Robinson, PMW Expo Racing/Optimum Motorsport, Ginetta G55, GT4, +0.935s
4, Ross Gunn, Beechdean AMR, Aston Martin Challenge, GT4, +0.942s
5, Dennis Strandberg, Academy Motorsport, Aston Martin Challenge, GT4, +1.044s

Raceday tickets for the British GT Championship at Snetterton on 22/23 August are available on the gate for £23 with free entry for under-13s. For more information, please call 0843 453 9000 or click here.