Category Archives: SRO Series

Bentley Motorsport Unveils New Continental GT3 (10.11.17)

Photo: Bentleymotors.com

Bentley Motorsport has unveiled its GT3 challenger for 2018, the new Continental GT3.

The new car promises to be lighter, more dynamic and more powerful than its predecessor. Bentley Motorsport enjoyed great success in 2017, winning the British GT Championship in the hands of Team Parker Racing and drivers Seb Morris and Rick Parfitt and taking the Teams Championship in the Blancpain Endurance Series Cup.

Brian Gush, Director of Motorsport at Bentley, is excited at the opportunities that the new car offers.

“After four years of success with our Continental GT3, we’re very excited to reveal our second-generation car,” said Gush. “It leaves no area or system untouched in search of even better performance, and early test results are promising.”

“The new Continental GT3 road car has proved to be a great starting point for the development of a new racer and the engineering development work is true to Bentley’s impeccable standards.”

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The new Continental GT3 has been designed from the all-new Continental GT road car, using a mostly aluminium structure.

The engine is an evolution of the race-proven Bentley twin-turbo V8 and exterior surfaces have been extensively tested in the wind tunnel.

A six-month test programme for the new Continental GT3 has already begun and will include a full 24 hour endurance race simulation.

It is expected that the new car will make its race debut at the opening round of the 2018 Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup at Monza on April 22.

British GT Continues With Multi-Class Format / Invites Entries For 2018 Season (25.10.17)

Photo: Jakob Ebrey / BritishGT.com

Series organiser of the British GT Championship, SRO Motorsports, has announced that the multi-class format will continue for the 2018 season and that entries are now being accepted, earlier than in previous years.

SRO had been discussing the idea of splitting the grids for separate GT3 and GT4 races due to the increasing popularity of GT4 machinery. However, after considerable discussion with all the stakeholders, the existing format will remain.

Despite talk over the past two seasons of the demise of the GT3 category in a national series, SRO has reserved 14 of the 34 full-season spaces for entries in the premier class. It has said, however, that this number could be revised either way ahead of the launch of the 2018 season.

Continue reading British GT Continues With Multi-Class Format / Invites Entries For 2018 Season (25.10.17)

Johnston And Farmer Return With TF Sport For 2018 British GT Championship (24.10.17)

Photo: Andy Lloyd

Surrey-based TF Sport has announced that Derek Johnston and Mark Farmer will remain with the team to contest the 2018 British GT Championship.

Johnston, GT3 Drivers Champion in 2016 with team-mate Jonny Adam, finished third in the GT3 drivers standings in 2017 with two wins, at Snetterton and Donington and two further visits to the podium.

Farmer, driving alongside Jon Barnes, finished fourth in the GT3 drivers standings in 2017, enjoying a second-place finish at Donington in the final round and a trio of third places, at Oulton Park, Snetterton and Brands Hatch.

“I’m delighted to be staying in the British GT Championship, TF Sport and the Aston Martin family for the 2018 season”, said Derek Johnston.

“We really smashed it at the end of the year – those final two rounds – so I really want to keep the momentum rolling into next year,” said Mark Farmer. “TF are a top team and I want to change as few parameters as possible and I think that I’m driving better than ever. We didn’t get a win this year but overall it was an excellent season with four podiums and, more importantly, we were always up there demonstrating that we were competitive.”

#11TF a.a. 17.10.24

Photo: Andy Lloyd

“Now I’m looking forward to round one and the season ahead.”

TF Sport Director Tom Ferrier is equally as focused on the coming season.

“It’s great to have them both commit so early for next season,” said Ferrier. “We’ve worked together with considerable success for a number of years now, so I’m really happy to confirm our two-car presence in this especially strong Championship.”

The 2018 British GT Championship opens at Oulton Park on March 31 – April 2.

British GT Champion Rick Parfitt Jnr Wins 2017 Sunoco 240 Challenge (16.10.17)

Rick Parfitt Jnr (left) With Team-Mate Seb Morris (Photo: Jakob Ebrey / BritishGT.com

Rick Parfitt Jnr, team-mate of fellow British GT GT3 drivers champion Seb Morris in the #31 Team Parker Racing Bentley GT3, has won the Sunoco 240 Challenge and with it a fully-funded drive in the 4-hour BMW Endurance Challenge in the build-up to the Rolex 24 At Daytona.

42-year old Parfitt Jnr, who began his racing career in the 2012 Total Quartz Ginetta GT5 Challenge, beat Brett Smith of Eurotech Racing by the narrowest of margins. Smith, who took over driving duties in Eurotech’s Honda Civic Type R following injuries to his father at Croft Circuit, finished less than half a point behind the Bentley driver on 96.11 points.

A delighted Parfitt commented on social media:

“Soo happy and excited to have won the Sunoco 240 Challenge! Daytona, here I come! Thank you to all that have supported me.”

Rick Parfitt Jnr joins his team-mate Seb Morris as a recipient of a Sunoco Challenge prize. Morris won the Sunoco Whelen Challenge for the 2016 season and with it a drive in the 2017 Rolex 24 at Daytona. Morris finished 14th overall in the #31 Whelen Engineering Cadillac DP1-V.R he shared with Dane Cameron, Eric Curran and Mike Conway.

The BMW Endurance Challenge takes place on January 26 2018.

Adam / Johnston Win At Donington. Parfitt / Morris Clinch GT3 Crown (24.09.17

Jonny Adam and Derek Johnston, driving the #1 TF Sport Aston Martin Vantage GT3, won the final round of the 2017 British GT Championship, heading a TF Sport 1 -2 after Jon Barnes, driving the sister #11 Vantage which took pole for the season finale, crossed the in second place.

Taking the final podium spot was Phil Keen, driving the #33 Lamborghini Huracán GT3 he shared with Jon Minshaw.

Seb Morris brought the #31 Team Parker Racing Bentley Continental GT3 home in fourth place after team-mate Rick Parfitt had handed the car over in third.

The fourth place finish was sufficient for Morris and Parfitt to secure their first GT3 Drivers Championship with Jon Minshaw and Phil Keen finishing second in the standings.

The HHC Motorsport pairing of Stuart Middleton and William Tregurtha, driving the #55 Ginetta G55 GT4 secured the GT4 Drivers Championship after twenty minutes of the start when title rivals Alex Reed and David Pittard went out after Reed spun the #55 entry.

The GT3 battle was hard-fought after pole-sitter Mark Farmer, in the #11 TF Sport Aston Martin Vantage GT3, was pushed hard by Derek Johnston in the sister #1 car, with brief contact between the TF Sport entries allowing Jon Minshaw in the #33 Barwell Motorsport Lamborghini Huracán to briefly move into second place.

A spin by Minshaw, however, relegated the #33 Barwell Motorsport entry down to eighth place before Minshaw brought the bright green Lamborghini back up to fifth place at the driver changes.

Parfitt took third place from Liam Griffin in the #6 Barwell Motorsport entry with an opportune move after a yellow flag. An aggrieved Parfitt admitted that the move had been the best of the year for him.

“At the beginning it seemed like I was hit by every single Lamborghini,” said an exhausted Parfitt “(Liam) Griffin seemed to be attempting to drive me off the circuit. He wasn’t even turning into the corners. it was absolutely the most amateurish move I’ve seen all year and it was a real shame. Luckily M-Sport build the Bentley strongly and it’s a bit of a tank. Liam was holding me up and doing a very good job of that. He was using the strength of the Lamborghini to park it on the apex and the used their superior traction.”

I timed the move (for third place) absolutely perfectly. It was very opportunistic. I saw the yellow and saw the green and just as we hit the green I was alongside. I was absolutely bang on that move and it was probably my best move if the year. After that, it was just about keeping my head together and driving consistently.”

After the pit stops had cycled through it was 2016 British GT Drivers champion Jonny Adam, now at the wheel of the #1 TF Sport Aston Martin Vantage GT3, who held the lead, ahead of Jon Barnes in the sister #11 car.

Phil Keen, now piloting the #33 Barwell Motorsports Lamborghini pushed hard but was unable to mount a serious challenge for second place.

Seb Morris, meanwhile, in the #31 Team Parker Racing Bentley Continental GT3 held station in fourth place knowing that it would be sufficient to secure his and Rick Parfitt’s first GT3 drivers title.

Rick Parfitt is the first driver to win both the GT4 and GT3 drivers titles.

The GT4 class was won by 2016 GT4 Drivers Champions Graham Johnson and Mike Robinson in the #501 PMW Expo Racing / Optimum Motorsport McLaren 570S GT4.

Full race report to follow.

TF Sport Locks Out Front Row For British GT Final Round. #31 Bentley / #33 Lamborghini On Second Row. (23.09.17)

Photo: BritishGT.com / Jakob Ebrey

TF Sport will occupy the front row of the grid for Sunday September 24’s final round of the 2017 British GT Championship after Mark Farmer and Jon Barnes lapped in a cumulative 2:55.337 to take pole in the #11 TF Sport Aston Martin Vantage GT3.

2016 Champions Derek Johnston and Jonny Adam, driving the #1 Aston, will join the sister car on the front row when they lapped in a cumulative 2:55.821.

2017 GT3 protagonists Barwell Motorsport and Team Parker Racing will start September 24’s 120-minute race alongside each other on the second row. Phil Keen, in the #33 Barwell Motorsport Lamborghini Huracán GT3, put in a 1:27.376 in the dying seconds of the 10-minute GT3 Pro session to snatch third on the grid with a cumulative 2:56.109 with driving partner Jon Minshaw.

The #31 Team Parker Racing Bentley Continental GT3 of Rick Parfitt and Seb Morris will start from fourth on the grid with a cumulative 2:56.170.

Jon Barnes brought the #11 TF Sport entry into the pits with minutes left to go in the GT3 Pro qualifying session, so confident was he that his 1:27.125 could not be improved upon.

The #11 driving partnership of Barnes and Farmer was delighted at their pole position.

“We’re really pleased. Mark came here on his own last Thursday and had a really good test and he’ll have to come and test on his own again because he’s obviously quick when I’m not here!” joked Jon Barnes. “It’s just fantastic. Mark pulled a really good time out of the bag – a low 1:28 as an Am round here is really awesome. I’m pleased from my own point of view because I haven’t been in the car for seven weeks so both of us can be really pleased with our day’s work and hopefully we can continue it into tomorrow.”

2016 Champion Derek Johnston is looking forward to some competitive racing for Sunday September 24’s season finale and doesn’t expect any team orders from TF Sport.

“No, not at all,” said Johnston. “We’re all ready to race. If there’s an opportunity for me to pass, for sure that’s what ‘m going to do. I’m not going to do anything stupid, obviously.”

The lights go out for the final round at 13:30 local time on Sunday September 24.