Closely fought championship switches to Snetterton

As the Avon Tyres British GT Championship heads for the power-hungry straights of the Snetterton circuit in Norfolk next weekend (4/5 July), the focus is on the exceptionally tight championship points situation. Five different driver pairings have taken overall race honours already this season, and just three points separates the top six drivers in the series. It's as close a season as anyone can recall.

Thanks to their maiden British GT race victory in Scotland earlier this month, and their podium-finishing consistency during the rest of the season, it's the Jones brothers, Godfrey and David, who lead the championship to Norfolk. Their Preci-Spark Ascari was ideally suited to the undulations and twists of Knockhill, and proved quick also at the start of the season at the faster circuits of Oulton Park and Spa-Francorchamps, which should bode well for their Snetterton pace.

But Snetterton's long straights and fast circuits will favour several of the Ascari's rivals also, not least the ABG Viper handled by Aaron Scott and Craig Wilkins. They took their first British GT win in Belgium in May and were victorious again in the wet-then-dry second race at Knockhill.

Then there's the Momo Mosler, in which erstwhile championship leader Daniel Brown plans to celebrate his 18th birthday in winning style at Snetterton. Dan, partnered by Stuart Hall, won both the Oulton races and was victorious in GT3 again - this time sharing duties at the wheel with Gregor Fisken - in one of the Rockingham rounds.

Next weekend young Brown will have to adapt himself to yet another co-driver, for he will share the Mosler with Martin Short, the boss of Cambridgeshire-based Rollcentre Racing. Short may be nearly three times Brown's age but he's lost none of the pace which has brought him countless British GT wins over the seasons, not least that which he scored with Fisken at Spa in May.

"It's half-way through the season and Dan has been bouncing into the lead of the championship and out again," said Short. "Gregor can't make Snetterton because of business commitments, so I am stepping in to give Dan the best help that I can. Snetterton has traditionally been my local track, and I have always enjoyed the racing in British GT, so I am looking forward to it and to supporting him with his championship bid."

The Ferrari brigade are expecting to put on a good show at Snetterton also, not least the Rosso Verde pairing of Hector Lester and Allan Simonsen, who topped the GT3 results sheet at Rockingham and who are reunited after Simonsen missed Knockhill in favour of a Ferrari drive at Le Mans.

After some dire luck in the early races, Phil Burton and Adam Wilcox now have the VRS Ferrari right on the money. They were second in GT3 at Rockingham and runners-up in both of the Knockhill races also.

All the Ferrari bad luck seems to have landed in the laps of MTECH Ferrari duo Duncan Cameron and Matt Griffin, whose 430 Scuderia has proven as fragile as it is beautiful. It would have won in Scotland but for a major mechanical failure almost within sight of the chequered flag.

Chad Racing celebrated a maiden podium finish last time out, and regular pilot Chris Hyman is rejoined for Snetterton by Paul Warren. Another GT3 car to watch out for in Norfolk is the mighty Ford GT - a race winner here in 2008 - which is driven this season by RPM men Michael Bentwood and Philip Walker.

Two cars which missed the Knockhill rounds - the Barwell-Beechdean Aston Martin and the Barwell Motorsport Invitation Class Ginetta G50Z - return for Snetterton, with Andrew Howard and Jamie Smyth handling the former and Piers Johnson partnering Rockingham outright race victor Olly Bryant in the latter.


The GT4 class battle at Snetterton could see Yorkshireman Jody Firth put the championship title virtually beyond the reach of any his rivals. Firth now has a clear solo championship lead as his regular co-pilot, 17-year-old Nigel Moore, was away making history as the youngest-ever British driver at Le Mans earlier this month when he might otherwise have been driving the Team WFR Ginetta at Knockhill.

There was a new GT4 class victor last time out in the shape of Stark Racing duo Ian Stinton and Paul Marsh. Stinton returns solo to the fray at Snetterton with his Ginetta, hoping for a repeat win.

The championship is sponsored by Avon Tyres and is further supported by motorsport insurance specialist AON, by Sunoco Racing Fuels and by Anglo American Oil Company.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
The Queen and the letter sent to Charlie
Arts and Entertainment
Eurovision Song Contest 2015
EurovisionGoogle marks the 2015 show
Two lesbians hold hands at a gay pride parade.
peopleIrish journalist shares moving story on day of referendum
Arts and Entertainment
<b>Kathryn Williams</b>
When I was supporting Ray La Montagne I was six months pregnant. He had been touring for a year and he was exhausted and full of the cold. I was feeling motherly, so I would leave presents for him and his band: Tunnock's Tea Cakes, cold remedies and proper tea. Ray seemed painfully shy. He hardly spoke, hardly looked at you in the face. I felt like a dick speaking to him, but said "hi" every day. </p>
He was being courted by the same record company who had signed me and subsequently let me go, and I wanted him to know that there were people around who didn't want anything from him. At the Shepherds Bush Empire in London, on the last night of the tour, Ray stopped in his set to thank me for doing the support. He said I was a really good songwriter and people should buy my stuff. I was taken aback and felt emotionally overwhelmed. Later that year, just before I had my boy Louis, I was l asleep in bed with Radio 4 on when Louis moved around in my belly and woke me up. Ray was doing a session on the World Service. </p>
I really believe that Louis recognised the music from the tour, and when I gave birth to him at home I played Ray's record as something that he would recognise to come into the world with. </p>
booksKathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
Liz Kendall played a key role in the introduction of the smoking ban
newsLiz Kendall: profile
Life and Style
techPatent specifies 'anthropomorphic device' to control media devices
The PM proposed 'commonsense restrictions' on migrant benefits
voicesAndrew Grice: Prime Minister can talk 'one nation Conservatism' but putting it into action will be tougher
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?