Sunday, August 05 2012
The Trackspeed Porsche of Steve Tandy and Joe Osborne held off a
hard charging Jann Mardenborough to claim victory by the slim
margin in a thrilling British GT Championship battle at
Despite damp track conditions all cars elected to start on slick tyres with the chances of a further rain shower low. The Trackspeed Porsches had no problems finding grip at the start and they launched into the lead on the run down to Riches with Tim Harvey leading Joe Osborne, with Richard Westbrook in third. The Motorbase Porsches followed suit applying the pressure on the top three on the first lap.
Newmarket man Michael Caine slipped past Westbrook for third briefly before he lost control of the Motorbase car. He recovered the spin but fell down the order and allowed Westbrook back into third for a Trackspeed 1-2-3. Further down the pack there were mechanical problems for Jonny Adam in the Beechdean Aston Martin, which saw him pull into the pits to retire.
Harvey continued to lead at the front but just four tenths of a second separated the three cars with Osborne and Westbrook both having a look at taking the lead. Alex Buncombe in the RJN Nissan was lurking behind the Porsches in fourth, but his hopes of victory were dented after receiving a drive through penalty. A further spin for Caine as he tried to recover saw him drop down to 13th place. There was also disappointment for race one winners Matt Bell and Charles Batemen as their McLaren retired with brake issues.
The Trackspeed Porsche continued to battle with Harvey at the head but the three cars were reduced to two when Westbrook went off at Oggies and was unable to rejoin the race. One car to profit from this was the Ferrari of John Dhillon and Aaron Scott which also past the Motorbase car of Benji Hetherington and Steve Parish to grab third. Another car on the move was the Chevron of former British Touring car driver Anthony Reid, which had climbed to eighth and seemed to have the pace to challenge the lead group.
The Trackspeed Porsches were first of the leaders to blink and duck into the pit lane for their mandatory pit stop and driver change. The Motorbase Porsche of Hetherington and Parish followed and two laps later the Aaron Scott and John Dhillon pitted from the lead. A slick stop for the Scuderia Vittoria squad saw them rejoin in the lead, but only just from the Harvey/Minshaw and Tandy/Osborne Trackspeed cars.
Dhillon was unable to hold onto the lead on his out lap as Minshaw and Tandy stormed through with the former going on to build a healthy lead. A three car battle developed for fourth between Parish, the BMW of Alasdair McCaig and a hard charging Jann Mardenborough in the RJN Nissan, which was recovering from a penalty. The GTR soon passed the pair and then set his sights on third which he claimed a few laps later.
While this battle was taking place, Minshaw's lead was shrinking by the lap and with 15 minutes of the race remaining Steve Tandy took the lead. There was plenty of action further back with Daniele Perfetti enjoying an impressive drive after receiving the car from Caine and he stormed up to fifth where he stayed until the flag.
But at the front excitement was building with Mardenborough lapping several seconds quicker than the lead pair and a victory was a distinct possibility. Despite piling incredible pressure on the Trackspeed pair, Tandy held firm to take the flag from Minshaw with Mardenborough in third. In the end just 1.9 seconds separated the top three for what was a grandstand finish.
In the GT4 battle Jody Fannin and Warren Hughes made up for the disappointment in race one with victory in race two from the Jota Mazda of Mark Ticehurst and Owen Mildenhall.
Avon Tyres British GT Championship Race 2 Result Top 10
1. Steve Tandy/Joe Osborne, Trackspeed, Porsche 997 RSR 31
2. Jon Minshaw/Tim Harvey, Trackspeed, Porsche 997 RSR, +1.414s
3. Alex Buncombe/Jann Mardenborough RJN Nissan, +1.945s
4. Alasdair McCaig/Ollie Millroy, Ecurie Ecosse, +11.181s
5. Daniele Perfetti/Michael Caine, Motorbase, Porsche 997 RSR, +13.129s
6. John Dhillon/Aaron Scott, Scuderia Vittoria, 29.728s
7. Jordan Witt/Anthony Reid, Chevron, +37.481s
8. Ron Johnson/Piers Johnson, Speedworks, +44.523s
9. Gary Eastwood/Ryan Hooker, FF Corse, +1min45.073s
10. Duncan Cameron/Matt Griffin, Mtech, Ferrari 458, +1 lap
The next major event at Snetterton is the British Touring Car Championship on 11/12 August. Tickets are available in advance from £25, with free admission for children aged 12 and under. For more information call 0843 453 9000 or click here.