BRDC F3. Highlights for Ben. Also due to delays the Saturday’s programme there were 3 races in one day for the Formula 3 runners, including Ben Hingley from Abergele. Ben, driving with the Fortec team, started the first race in 4th place which he defended throughout in an excellent fashion! In race two, initially he was running in 3rd place, but accident with 2 other cars, brought the red flags and meant the race had to be re-stared for a 4 lap sprint to the flag! When the lights changed Hingeley stormed into 2nd place, which he had to defend from 2 other cars, as the leader Ahmed escaped to win. Speaking after the race, Ben said ‘I’m very happy especially as I started 5th, and my steering took a hit, as I was quite involved in the incident at the first corner, but I was struggling to turn right. P2 though, I couldn’t be more happy. It has put us slightly on the back foot for the final race, as I am starting seventh, but I’ve got more points and that is all that matters!’ Team Boss Richard Dutton who gave out the awards said ‘The boy done good!’
After finishing in 7th place in the 3rd race, Ben is in 4th place in the points standings, with 60 points. Enaam Ahmed leads with 95 points. http://www.britishf3.com/
Brit GT – Seb Morris and Rick Parfitt jnr had blitzed the field on Saturday to take Pole Position for both races for the opening rounds of the 2017 British GT Championship at Oulton Park on Easter Monday. Due to the narrow pit lane at Oulton Park the normal endurance format cannot be used, and this means the event takes place over two 1 hour races, with a driver change allowed at between 25 & 35 minutes!) However Ryan Ratcliffe did not have such a happy time after, the Llanelli drivers’ team-mate, Lee Mowle, crashed the car, and damaged the front suspension!
In somewhat typical Bank Holiday weather, Easter Monday in the Oulton Park area dawned overcast with some heavy drizzle! There was a warm-up session and then two 1 hour races for the British GT runners. However Lee Mowle went someway to save the day for the Groundhog team by posting a quick time in the damp warm-up session!
British GT – RACE 1 – track wet
As the cars crossed the start-line the Lamborghini Hurrican of John Minshaw took an immediate lead and drew away from Rick who stablised the Bentley Continental GT3 in a steady 2nd place! Meanwhile Lee Mowle was on the move in the 6.3 litre Mercedes! However it almost came to an end when he got on to the grass and hit the barriers again, but got going again at the tail of the field. After 30 minutes, Rick came in for a late pit-stop to hand over to Seb, who had an immediate fight on his hands and dropped to 4th place. Late in the race Seb managed to latch onto the 3rd place Aston Martin of Johnny Adam. In a classic duel Seb closed in under braking, only for Adam to pull away on the straights and was only .5 of second behind at the end! ‘We don’t have any wet weather traction so I didn’t really didn’t really have a chance. Even so 4th isn’t so bad, as we don’t have any success penalty to serve in race 2!’ Ryan Ratcliffe managed to get his Mercedes back up to 10th, to score a single point. ‘The team told me to take it as test session so we could try some things. I was on the radio, every lap ‘I’ve got a lot of understeer. When I got back to the pits I could see the splitter was on the floor! I’ll enjoy
driving a car that’s not damaged’
Brit GT Race 2 – track – drying. With Seb on board it was strange to see him beaten off the line and he was 3rd after the first lap. Things got a little strange as both TPR Bentleys’ got together, with the no7 car spinning off! The stewards decided to look at the incident, but whilst that was happening, Seb, in the ‘31’ car, took 2nd place after a muscular move! But he was then handed a ‘Drive through’ penalty, rejoining the race in 7th place. Ryan Ratcliffe, in the AMD Mercedes, was making good progress. Some press on driving and a late race problem for one of the leaders, moved Seb n Rick up to 5th and Ryan n Lee up to 7th both handily placed for a run to the end in prospect. However the race ended after only 55 minutes under safety car, after a major collision between several cars, left the track littered with debris & cars. Post-race action from the stewards, pinned the blame on the No 7 Bentley, which was being driven by Ian Loggie, and the car was excluded from the results! The points after the 2 races show Seb & Rick in 4th place overall with 22 points and Ryan & Lee have 7 points! Minshaw & Keen (Lamborghini Hurrican) lead with 50 points! The next races in the Brit GT & F3 package is at Rockingham on
Race Results on http://www.tsl-timing.com/event/171505
Seb Morris and Rick Parfitt jnr blitzed the field to take Pole Position for both races for the opening rounds of the 2017 British GT Championship at Oulton Park on Easter Monday. Due to the narrow pit lane at Oulton Park the normal endurance format cannot be used, and this means the event takes place over two 1 hour races, with a driver change allowed at between 25 & 35 minutes! Qualifing was split into two 10 minute sessions and Rick took pole position for Race 1 on his final lap. ‘It was a real banzia lap’! Seb dominated his session and banged in a quick time of 1.32.93 secs. No-one else was able to match his time, and so the Bentley duo will lead off the grid in both Mondays races! (The second TPR Bentley run by Welsh leg-end Jules Westwood, were not so lucky) However Ryan Ratcliffe did not have such a happy time after the Llanelli drivers’ team-mate crashed the car, and damaged the front suspension! ‘I did what I could but the car was almost too difficult to drive’
On Easter Monday there will be a warm-up session and then two 1 hour races for the British GT runners. However due to delays in the programme there will be 3 races in one day for the Formula 3 runners, including Ben Hingley from Abergele.
Seb & Rick – team-mates again for 2017!
The GT Season starts with even more Welsh drivers joining in! The 2017 Britsh GT season starts at Oulton Park on Easter Monday when Seb Morris & Rick Parfitt Jnr will return as team-mates in the Bentley Continental GP3 car run by Team Parker Racing, ready to make a even bigger challenge for top honours, after finishing in 3rd overall in their debut season! Known to the drivers as ‘The Beast’ there has been input from Bentley aimed at improving the car, to make it even more competitive! Joining the team as title sponsors are Ast Transport Branding with Eddie Stobart confirmed as providing key logistical support, the two new partners feature prominently on the car’s striking new green and white colour scheme.
Additionally, Saxon Air is confirmed as a new partner while existing backers Venu and Liberty Properties Plc return to support Morris’ British GT Championship bid. Parfitt Jnr, meanwhile, brings backing from Geoffrey Insurance, EG Solutions, Aggreko and Flat Pack Direct among others.
Seb said, ‘I know everyone at the team, Rick and I are determined to bring some big results back for all of our amazing sponsors.”
Since the end of the 2016 season, Seb has had a spectacular debut in the Daytona 24hr race, and although sadly Ricks dad died, he himself has been able to make sure he has more time to devote to racing by making sure races do not clash with concerts with his own rock band!
Speaking on behalf of headline commercial partner Ast Transport Branding, Managing Director Mark Aston said: “This is a fantastic opportunity and we’re excited to be working with Seb and Rick for 2017.” Saxonair will also sponsor Seb on a personal basis. Saxon Air is a private air travel company which operates from bases throughout Europe covering both Helicopter and Aircraft operations at London Luton, London Stansted, Norwich and Cambridge. Team Parker Racing principal Stuart Parker said: “Having Seb and Rick back in the car for the 2017 season is fantastic news for all at Team Parker. The whole team is motivated to get better than in 2016, having continuity is paramount in what is going to be the hardest fought British GT Championship for years. The relationship with M-Sport and Bentley has blossomed and we look forward to representing them again this year.”
Joining Seb on the Britsh GT package is Ben Hingley from Abergele who will contest The BRDC F3 Championship with Fortec, the top F3 team run by Richard Dutton who has a long & happy history of success with Welsh drivers, including Seb Morris himself!
One of Sebs contemporaries Matthew Parry from Cardiff is also moving into GT racing and will take part in the 2017 Blacpain GT3 championship with Bob Nevilles RJN Motul Nissan Nismo GTR GT3 car! havng agreed a deal to pilot RJN Motorsport’s #22 Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 in the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup and will partner Jersey’s Struan Moore and Australia’s Matt Simmons in all five Blancpain endurance rounds this season. (RJN is run by our friend Bob Neville) Matt makes the switch from single-seaters having reached the heights of GP3, standing atop the podium in 2016 and posting top ten championship finishes in each of his campaigns. Parry’s open-wheel career also includes titles in both Formula BMW and Formula Renault, leading to his achievements being recognised with the 25th McLaren Autosport BRDC Award, where he got his first taste of GT machinery during the assessment process. Despite having focused on single-seaters since graduating from an ultra-successful karting career, Parry insists that he will have no trouble adapting to the very different sportscar arena.
“After racing in GP3 for two years, we evaluated our options over the winter and, while there were opportunities to continue in single-seaters, the chance to link up with a team like RJN and run in a championship-winning car like the Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 was too good to pass up,” Parry explained, “I already had a taste for GTs following the McLaren Autosport BRDC assessment, and getting the chance to test different cars in the last few months convinced me that it was the right time to make the step over to sportscars – and endurance racing in particular. That was a big attraction of this deal as endurance racing is one of the few things missing from my CV, and I’m really looking forward to testing myself in the cauldron of Blancpain competition.” http://www.mattparryracing.co.uk/LatestNews.aspx?ArticleId=176 (RJN also ran fellow Cardiff racer Jann Mardenborough in 2010 so Matt is in good company.)
Backing up Matt & Seb is Andy Meyrick, and in addition to his MSA duties, Andy will actually be racing himself in 2017! He will be driving a McLaren 570S with Bullitt Racing in the GT4 European Series Northern Cup in 2017, with his new teammate Stephen Pattrick.
Andy said: “I’ve been keeping a very close eye on GT4 for the last couple of years now, I really admire the racing and the close competition.The team is well organised and I’m sure will be competitive very quickly, this was a key part of my decision to take the role. ed by David Price, the team has a great opportunity to challenge at the front of the pack this year. I’m excited to be a part of GT4″.
Team principal David Price said: “We were looking for an experienced GT racer to lead our team and take the fight to straight to the front, Andy is perfect for the role. We are delighted to have him onboard”. http://gt4series.com/ NORTHERN CUP CALENDAR 2017, 2 April Misano, Italy, 7 May Brands Hatch, 11 June Red Bull Ring, Austria, 16 July, Slovakia Ring, 20 August Zandvoort, Holland, 17 September Nürburgring, Germany
Plus Andy annouced that he’ll be racing in the 2017 Michelin Le Mans Cup with Motorsport 98, driving the dramatic looking Ligier JS P3! alongside accomplished Belgian driver and Motorsport 98 team owner, Eric De Doncker.
Andy said: “I’m really excited about working with Motorsport 98, who are a really well established race team, and it’s great to get behind the wheel of the Ligier JS P3 in the LM P3 series. Alongside my current drive in the GT4 series, I’m looking forward to varied challenges within the 2017 race calendar. The Michelin Le Mans Cup is the perfect stepping stone towards the European Le Mans and World Endurance Championships for the team, and having previously finished 4th place overall in 2010 Le Mans, it will be fantastic to be racing there once again.” The Michelin Le Mans Cup action kicks off on 13th May at Monza, by which time its hoped that Andys cowl and cape will arrive for his first drive in the Liger ‘Batmobile’!
Also Rory Collimgbourne, from Newport, Gwent, has signed a deal to contest the Lamborghini Super Trofeo Asia with top team Leipert Motorsport.
The 19-year-old, from Newport in Wales, has competed in the Renault UK Clio Cup for the past two seasons but is now setting out on a path into the world of GT endurance racing in the prestigious one-make Lamborghini category as team-mate to Australia’s Ben Gersekowski.
“Very exciting times are ahead”, said an elated Collingbourne, “This year is going to be a big challenge, but one I am more than willing to take on! Turning professional at 19-years-old isn’t what a lot of people my age achieve, especially racing on the opposite side of the world.
“Driving for Leipert Motorsport has definitely given me the best chance to compete at the sharp end in the Lamborghini Super Trofeo Asia, it’s a world class team with proven results. This is just the start for what we have planned for the future and Veloce Sports (who are run by Rupert Sevensden-Cook) have been a massive help – it’s a world class management team and I can’t wait to represent them as a driver.” Rory will do well to match the success of Jake Rattenbury, who became the Lamborghini Super Trofeo World Champion in 1985
Over the edge with Andy! Race Ace Andy Meyrick, originally from Swansea but now living in Cheshire, is set to do a 240ft abseil, after he joined Team Humphrey as the newest Patron of Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital Charity. Andy comments: “I’ve seen first-hand the incredible work the hospital does and how the Charity works hard to support the hospital which is why I’m really excited and honoured to become an official patron. I know how much the hospital means to so many families across the North West who have needed to use its services, and for that reason I couldn’t think of a better local charity to support. I’m excited to be able to give something back to my local community who have always been so very supportive of me”
Andy has already signed up for his first challenge, a 240ft abseil over the edge of Liberty Heights in Manchester City Centre to help raise funds in support of the Children’s Hospital.
Andy adds: “Although I’m used to extreme sports I’ve never taking part in an abseil before and let’s put it this way, it won’t be the easiest of challenges for me! I’m sure my stomach will be turning when I’m at the very top but knowing it is raising money for such a good cause, and to help poorly children and the hospital will spur me on!
Sarah Naismith, Head of Charities at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital Charity commented: “. I’m delighted that Andy has pledged his support and we look forward to working with him more in the future.”
Sponsor Andy’s abseil by visiting his Justgiving page here: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Andy-Meyrick
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