Ginetta Victorious in British GT Championship Opener
The Speedworks Motorsport Ginetta G50 was victorious at Oulton Park yesterday, Easter Monday, in the opening round of the Avon Tyres British GT Championship.
Driven by team owner Christian Dick and Jamie Stanley the Northwich-based car led the opening race of the season with Stanley behind the wheel chased by the KTM X Bow of Ben Harvey/Rory Butcher. The lighter KTM, running to international Supersport regulations, was ideally suited to the fast corners at Oulton Park but the Ginetta had greater power and a fascinating duel developed in the second stint. Stanley handed over to Dick who inherited a healthy advantage but Butcher in the KTM hacked away at the deficit and sneaked past for the lead. Dick was in determined mood and retook the KTM and spent the final laps making the G50 as wide as possible to score victory. After a fierce fight the two cars crossed the line just 0.436 sec apart.
Two more G50s scored points with the Century Motorsport car of Vibe Smed/Nathan Freke fourth and Joe Osborne/Osman Yusuf (Joe Osborne Racing) fifth. Danish girl Smed started in Freke’s car, the former Porsche racer having her first race in a Ginetta and turned in a steady opening stint before Freke took over. The reigning Ginetta G50 champion had missed qualifying as he was at Thruxton running cars in the one-make G50 Cup but was quickly into the groove as he moved the car back into contention. Osborne took over from Yusuf but was handicapped by a stop-go penalty of one second as the team hadn’t served the regulation pit stop time. That dropped a furious Joe to fifth in class.
Race two was another Ginetta/KTM duel as Dick and Butcher went head to head in the opening stint but the fleet X Bow pulled out a gap despite an oily track surface. That left Stanley with over 20 seconds to pull back in his stint but it proved too great a deficit and the Fox-backed car finished second in class with Jamie and Christian ending the weekend as joint championship leaders.
Nathan Freke suffered problems with an oil leak and retired while a steady drive from Osman Yusuf brought Joe Osborne’s car home fourth in class, reigning European GT4 champion Osborne having enjoyed a great dice with Freke early in the race.
Rounds three and four of the Avon Tyres British GT Championship are at Knockhill, Scotland, on May 8/9.
Images: Jakob Ebrey