British GT round 5 2022 – Snetterton
The 2022 British GT season made the trip over to Norfolk and the circuit of Snetterton. The weekend saw the dual race format again, two races of one hour each, instead of the longer races we’ve seen in the recent rounds.
During Free Practice and Qualifying, the Mercedes AMG teams looked strong, with AMGs taking the top three grid positions in both races for Sunday, Ram Racing sharing the spoils with 2 Seas Motorsport.
In GT4 qualifying, Matt Cowley put in an amazing lap to take pole in race one in the Ford Mustang, ahead of the R Racing Aston Martin in 2nd and the Supra from Toyota Gazoo in 3rd. For race two R Racing took pole, followed by Steller Motorsport and Century Motorsport.
Overnight on Saturday, they announced a BoP change, to try and even things up, AMG gained a little weight and had a little power taken away, the McLaren the opposite, with the Lamborghinis sat in the middle with no change.
In race one Mark Sansom got a great start in the Bentley, going from 5th to 3rd in the first turn but unfortunately a spin a little later took them out of contention. Down in GT4, Cowley in the Mustang built a good lead early on after starting on pole, even getting past the GT3 BMW briefly. While there were a few place changes, there were no incidents in the opening laps and everyone got away cleanly. Jonny Adam came out of the pitstops leading GT3 in the 2Seas AMG, but Callum MacLeod in the Ram Racing AMG wasn’t far behind. With Cowley’s blistering pace early on, and despite a 10 second success penalty in the pitstop, the Academy Mustang retained the lead in GT4 after the pit-stops, coming out just ahead of the Team Parker Porsche in 2nd. With 8 minutes to go in race 1, the GT4 lead battle boiled over when Hopkins hit the side of Signoretti’s Mustang, sending it off the track and leaving it with damage not allowing it to continue. For his part in the contact, Hopkins received a 30sec post-race penalty.
Jonny Adam who was showing good pace, started to slow up from the lead in GT3 with a puncture, just 6 minutes from the end, leaving MacLeod to take over the lead.
With Academy out and a penalty for Team Parker, who crossed the line in 1st, it was the R Racing Aston Martin that came through to take the GT4 win, getting a British GT record in doing so, for the youngest winning pairing.
As well as the 30sec penalty at the end of race 1, Hopkins also started at back of grid in the Team Parker Porsche for various bits of contact through the season.
De Pauw built a good lead in the Ram Racing AMG ahead of Mitchell in the Barwell Lambo in second, moving up from 3rd on grid, followed by MacLeod in the sister Ram Racing AMG. Jamie Day in the race 1 GT4 winning R Racing Aston which started on pole, struggled in the opening few laps and dropped to 4th, with Sennan Fielding in the Steller Audi R8 leading the way. After the GT3 pit-stops, the leading 2 were the same, with Ferguson taking over the No15 Ram Racing AMG and Adam Balon in the No72 Barwell Lamborghini. Because of the win in race1, the No6 Ram Racing AMG had a success penalty to serve during the pit-stop, with Ian Loggie coming out of the pits in 6th place. Mia Flewitt in the 7TSix McLaren now in 3rd, having started 8th. The WPI team received a penalty for a pit-lane infringement, harming their chances of a good result, but they weren’t alone as a few other teams receive penalties for similar reasons. Unfortunately Stuart Proctor was involved in one of the few contacts in race 2 and spun off on to the grass trying to negotiate Edgar in the GT4 Toyota. In GT4 Jack Brown in the Century BMW made a great pass on Matt Topham in the Newbridge Aston Martin to take the lead. In the Mustang, Matt Cowley was chasing them down fast, keen to make up for Academy being taken out in race 1. In the last few laps, the leading GT3 pair came up against a lot of GT4 traffic, making the job a lot harder for Balon to pass, but Ferguson did a great job, especially in his first year in GT3, to keep Balon behind him. After issues in race 1, they had better luck in race 2 and Flick Haigh brought the 2Seas AMG home in 3rd place. Meanwhile Matt Cowley managed to get past the Aston of Newbridge Motorsport to finish 2nd in GT4, with the Aston in 3rd, while Jack Brown brought the Century BMW home to take the top honours in GT4.