In the first of two 60-minute practice sessions ahead of qualifying for the final round of the 2019 British GT Championship, Phil Keen went quickest of the GT3 entries, the Lamborghini factory driver lapping the #72 Barwell Motorsport Huracán GT3 around the 2.487 mile Leicestershire circuit in 1:27.667.
Second quickest was the #22 Balfe Motorsport McLaren 720S GT3 in which Rob Bell put in a 1:27.835 in the car he shares with Shaun Balfe.
Third quickest was the Mark Farmer / Nicki Thiim #2 TF Sport Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT3 in which the Danish factory driver put in a 1:27.870.
Quickest of the GT4 grid was the #15 Multimatic Motorsports Europe in which Seb Priaulx set a 1:36.036. The #75 Optimum Motorsport Aston Martin was second quickest in class with a 1:36.094.
The session got underway in almost perfect conditions and almost immediately Nicki Thiim, at the wheel of the #2 TF Sport Aston Martin, set a 1:28.227 with Ian Loggie in the #6 RAM Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 second quickest with a 1:28.642.
With 12 minutes of the session gone, Phil Keen, piloting the drivers standings-leading #72 Barwell Motorsport Lamborghini, went to the top of the timing screens with the eventual quickest lap of 1:27.667 on his fourth lap, beating the GT3 lap record set by TF Sport’s Nicki Thiim of 1:27.948, set at the previous Donington round.
GT3 championship contender Jonny Adam, at the wheel of the #47 TF Sport Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT3, took the first stint of the session in the car he shares with Graham Davidson, Adam lapping in 1:28.320 ahead of handing over to the Aberdeen-based driver for the final 36 minutes.
The #43 Century Motorsport BMW M4 GT4 had an engine problem and was in the garage as the session passed the 30-minute mark, Nathan Freke having set his best time of 1:36.653 after eight laps.
The session, however, was red-flagged with less than 30 minutes remaining after the #32 Track Focused KTM X-Bow GT4 with Mike McCollum at wheel went off at McLeans. Recovery of the #32 X-Bow took longer than anticipated and practice resumed with just over nine minutes remaining. None of the top times were improved on.
The second free practice session begins at 12:45 local time.