Group C/GTP Report, Brands Hatch – June 3-4
There was a fairly major sportscar event going on elsewhere in Europe last weekend, so you didn’t have to travel all the way to Le Mans to see sports prototypes in action. The Historic Sports Car Club made its annual visit to the Brands Hatch Grand Prix Circuit on June 3-4, with races for various classes of historic cars, from ‘60s sportscars, to historic Formula 1 and Formula 5000 cars.

The highlights of the weekend though, for sportscar fans, were the two 30-minute races for the Group C and GTP cars, notable cars being Justin Law’s Jaguar XJR12, and the Porsche 962 of Mark Sumpter. Other well-known names made an appearance as well, with Ian Stinton driving a Spice SE86 DFZ.

Qualifying took place in glorious sunshine, without a cloud in the sky. This weather would remain for the entire weekend, a far cry from the rain and wind at Snetterton earlier in the week (where current Le Mans cars were being shaken down)…

It was David Mercer in the Spice SE90C who took pole position in the 25-minute session, with a lap time of 1:20.051. Justin Law was right behind him in the distinctive Silk Cut-liveried XJR12, just over half a second slower. Third spot was taken by Richard Eyre’s Jaguar XJR16, nearly 3 seconds back. Mark Sumpter was fourth on the grid in the distinctive Art Sports Porsche 962.

The races were each over a 30 minute duration, and they were treated as flat out sprints!

In the first, Law made a good start to go into the lead on lap 1, and maintained it for several laps.

Mercer was never much more than a second behind though, and pushed him all the way, with Law finally succumbing to the pressure, and sliding wide at Westfield corner on lap 15.

This allowed the Spice through into the lead, and Mercer romped home to finish nearly three seconds ahead of Law. Richard Eyre took third in the XJR16, with the Porsche 962 fourth. Gary Pearson was fifth in the ADA Cosworth, with Jim Mullen rounding out the top six in his Spice GTP, a lap adrift.

The second race, held on Sunday afternoon, saw the grid line up according to the finishing positions of race 1. Once again it was the Jaguar versus the Spice at the front of the field, this time with Mercer leading the majority of the race, and although Law got close at times he was never able to seriously challenge for the lead. It finished Spice, Jaguar, and Porsche 962 third, when Richard Eyre retired the XJR16 after 8 laps.

Gary Pearson was fourth in the ADA Cosworth, Jim Mullen was fifth in Spice GTP, and Nick Rini was sixth in his Jaguar XJR12D.
Mike Hoyer

Race 1 Result
1 21 GP1 David MERCER Spice SE90C 30:22.630 22 1:20.927

2 8 GP1 Justin LAW Jaguar XJR12 30:25.459 22 1:21.538
3 2 GP1 Richard EYRE Jaguar XJR16 31:20.556 22 1:23.514
4 53 GP1 Mark SUMPTER Porsche 962 31:39.351 22 1:24.439
5 75 GP3 Gary PEARSON ADA Cosworth 31:44.478 22 1:25.211
6 12 GP1 Jim MULLEN Spice GTP 31:14.009 21 1:27.374
7 70 GP3 Ian STINTON Spice SE86 DFZ 30:38.804 20 1:30.597
8 32 GP1 Nick RINI Jaguar XJR12D 30:40.977 20 1:29.311
9 28 GP1 Richard ODDIE Argo JM20C 31:11.539 20 1:29.647
10 29 GP1 Martin EYRE Gebhardt Cosworth 31:39.153 20 1:31.192
11 33 GP2 Henry PEARMAN Porsche 956B 31:08.110 19 1:28.858
12 103 GP4 Duncan McKAY Bardon DB2 31:55.612 18 1:44.279
13 16 GP4 Peter SCHLEIFER March 84G 25:14.996 15 1:31.742
Not Classified
88 GP1 Nick RANDALL Nissan NTP1 7:55.402 5 1:31.354
37 GP4 Richard BATEMAN Tiga GC287 8:56.671 5 1:44.861
26 GP3 Alvin POWELL Tiga 288 1:41.162 1 1:41.162

Race 2 Result
1 21 GP1 David MERCER Spice SE90C 30:11.058 22 1:20.691

2 8 GP1 Justin LAW Jaguar XJR12 30:12.494 22 1:21.195
3 53 GP1 Mark SUMPTER Porsche 962 31:15.640 22 1:23.035
4 75 GP3 Gary PEARSON ADA Cosworth 30:29.882 21 1:25.965
5 12 GP1 Jim MULLEN Spice GTP 30:32.515 21 1:25.569
6 32 GP1 Nick RINI Jaguar XJR12D 30:15.103 20 1:28.570
7 28 GP1 Richard ODDIE Argo JM20C 30:20.200 20 1:29.164
8 29 GP1 Martin EYRE Gebhardt Cosworth 30:21.526 20 1:28.558
9 33 GP2 Henry PEARMAN Porsche 956B 30:26.262 20 1:29.070
10 70 GP3 Ian STINTON Spice SE86 DFZ 30:40.612 20 1:29.694
11 103 GP4 Duncan McKAY Bardon DB2 30:56.452 18 1:38.225
12 37 GP4 Richard BATEMAN Tiga GC287 30:59.250 18 1:39.964
13 16 GP2 Peter SCHLEIFER March 84G 30:43.053 17 1:30.686
Not Classified
2 GP1 Richard EYRE Jaguar XJR16 11:13.287 8 1:22.386
88 GP1 Nick RANDALL Nissan NTP1 4:56.106 3 1:35.138

Here are several of the other entries, beginning with the unique Bardon.

 

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