British GT Championship – Silverstone – Saturday Morning
26 - & Sorting Out The Porsches
The only car
missing from the provisional entry is the Prosport – two having
appeared on the initial list, then one, then none.
A very overcast
morning, and there was some rain at 08.30, with some damp patches
as the free practice session got underway at 09.00. There was also
oil down at Becketts and beyond.
drama involved the unusual sight of a rod through the block of the
Chevy V8 in the Eclipse Mosler.
had a spare engine at Breckland, so we got hold of that late yesterday
and fitted it last night,” explained co-owner Chris Pollard.
“We’ve been running it in this morning.”
So the #69 Mosler
was well down on the timesheet, in 17th. The Monaro was further
down than that, but the returning Matt Griffin only went out at
the start of the session, and he felt there were another two seconds
to come, at least (on the 1:28.702, 23rd fastest).
hungrier than ever. I’d been getting a bit down earlier in
the season, but once you’re not doing it, you realise how
much you miss it. We’re struggling on straight line speed,
but we’ve got a reliable engine in the car.”
very lean and very fit, with not too much of a limp: he was displaying
some impressive scars on his left leg.
At the other
end of the ‘grid’, it was Scuderia Ecosse 1-2, #35 from
#34, Andrew Kirkaldy setting the 1:21.583, half a second quicker
than #34. Then it was the Embassy and Eurotech / John Guest Porsches,
then Steven Brady in the Ultima – then the fastest of the
GT3s, Stuart Moseley in the #96 Motorbase Quaife 911. Piers Masarati
was second quickest in the Trackspeed Invitation Class 911, and
delighted with life.
So was Shane
Lynch: “This is my kind of team – they’re so laid
back,” he said of Hector Lester’s United Christian Broadcasters
seemed to be remarkably few problems.
The only car
not to go out was the bio-diesel Trident. “We’re down
on turbo boost,” commented team owner Phil Bevan. “We’ll
be out for qualifying, but don’t expect too much from us yet.
We’ve ‘only’ got about 375 bhp and 700 lb ft of
Notice the twin
Garrett turbos nestling down at the front of the Hummer engine.
This unit has been on the test-bed for eight hours, and it should
run forever at its 4,500 rpm limit, "with only a hint of smoke
from low revs."
It has been hard work keeping track of all the various comings and
goings in certain parts of the GT3 Porsche pack this season, but
it finally looks as though things are settling down.
We began the
season at Donington with Bill Barrett Motorsport (BBM), RPM/Quaife
and Motorbase, but by the time we arrived at Thruxton, RPM and Quaife
had gone their separate ways. Now we had Motorbase running a car
for Phil Quaife and Dave Pinkney, an arrangement that was later
formalised to Motorbase Quaife. BBM arrived at Silverstone in August
with a Motorbase car, having leased the car following the catastrophic
loss of their race engine in testing. Now, at Silverstone for a
second time, the #36 car is to be found running under the RPM banner.
driver moves are even more numerous and confusing, but they also
now seem to be reasonably sorted.
So with two
distinct two-car teams, Jules Phillips of RPM explained how the
latest merger came about. “After we (BB) lost the engine in
August, we came to an arrangement with Motorbase and they really
helped us out, but after that race we needed to decide on what to
a link up with Motorbase, but we had a really good, experienced
bunch of lads at BBM and didn’t want to risk them being dispersed
throughout the Motorbase setup, so we started talking to RPM.”
Phillips has connections throughout national motorsport through
his company, Aurok.
spoken to Robin Mortimer, it looked like the ideal set-up. RPM had
the cars, but not the experience of longer distance racing, while
we had the experience but no car.”
that this is a permanent arrangement. “We’ve got big
plans for next year. We’ll definitely be running two cars
in British GT with these drivers (Sean Edwards, Steve Warburton,
Tim Harvey and Alex Mortimer), but we may also run a couple of cars
in Britcar to bring on other drivers. We’ll also definitely
be entering the Britcar 24 next year.”
The team also
has plans beyond these shores, with several endurance events in
So is there
any rancour between the teams after all the chopping and changing?
“No, not at all,” smiled Phillips. “It’s
serious at the circuit, but we still meet up at the pub for a few
points later. In fact, we’re sharing a table with the Quaife
boys at the awards party next week, so it can’t be that bad,