World’s Fastest Gamer James Baldwin and McLaren driver Michael O’Brien, sharing the driving duties in the #2 Jenson Team Rocket RJN McLaren 720S GT3, won Race One in the Intelligent Money British GT Championship opening weekend at Oulton Park.
O’Brien took the chequered flag just under two seconds ahead of Ollie Wilkinson in the pole-sitting #96 Optimum Motorsport McLaren.
Completing the podium positions, and a 1-2-3 for the Woking marque, was Dean Macdonald in the #9 2 Seas Motorsport McLaren, the new-for-2020 team racing for the first time at Oulton Park.
Victory in the GT4 class went to the #95 TF Sport Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT4 piloted by Connor O’Brien and, taking the chequered flag, Patrick Kibble. Second in the GT4 category went to the # 23 Speedworks Motorsport Toyota GR Supra GT4 of Sam Smelt and James Kell while the final class podium position went to the #58 HHC Motorsport McLaren 570S GT4, Patrik Matthiesen and Jordan Collard sharing the driving duties.
Lewis Proctor, at the wheel of the #96 Optimum Motorsport McLaren 720S GT3, led the field away from the grid and, after three laps, had built a small gap to Jordan Witt in the #10 2 Seas Motorsport Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo. The sister #9 2 Seas Motorsport McLaren piloted by Angus Fender held on to third position.
After twelve laps, Proctor’s advantage was reducing and the #96 McLaren was just under 1.3 seconds ahead of the Witt’s #10 entry with the #9 McLaren a further 3.852 seconds behind.
As the pit window approached, Witt was putting pressure on Proctor and was about to challenge for the lead as the Optimum Motorsport pilot headed for the pits and the hand-over to Ollie Wilkinson.
After the driver changes had cycled through, Jack Mitchell in the #10 McLaren held the lead, just under 1.5 seconds ahead of Ollie Wilkinson in the #96 entry. In third was the #2 Jenson Team Rocket RJN McLaren, now driven by Michael O’Brien.
O’Brien passed Wilkinson for second place as Jack Mitchell pulled away at the front, building a lead of over nine seconds by Lap 21. The #10 car was, however, called into the pit lane for a penalty and the disappointment was further compounded for Mitchell with an additional penalty for speeding in the pit lane. The incident promoted Michael O’Brien in the #2 car into the lead with Ollie Wilkinson into second.
The safety car was called into action within the final ten minutes as Matt Cowley’s #61 Academy Motorsport Ford Mustang parked up on the side of the circuit. Racing resumed with one minute remaining and O’Brien held on to take the first Intelligent Money British GT Championship victory for Jenson Team Rocket RJN.
TF Sport took a lights-to-flag class victory in the GT4 class as Connor O’Brien as Patrick Kibble maintained the Redhill-based team’s pole position advantage over the #23 Speedworks Motorsport Toyota GR Supra GT4 driven by Sam Smelt and James Kell.
There was disappointment for the #21 Balfe Motorsport Mclaren 570-S GT4 Pro-Am entry after Mia Flewitt and Eaun Hankey were handed a 10-second stop-go penalty for a pit-stop infringement. As the sole Pro-Am entry, the #21 car still took the class victory but the duo will be looking to improve in Race Two when Hankey will start from the GT4 class pole position.
Race two gets underway at 16:45 local time.