Joe Osborne’s first win as a McLaren Automotive Factory Driver was the headline in what turned into one of the most successful weekends in McLaren’s British GT Championship history, the 570S GT4 scoring both class wins and podiums at Snetterton. In the first race on Sunday morning, Osborne led home a one-two finish for customer Tolman Motorsport and the McLaren 570S GT4. Osborne’s car, which he shares with David Pattison, started the race sixteenth but quickly climbed the order to tenth before the safety car was called into action just a handful of minutes before the pit window opened. With the field bunched up, and the opportunity to pit coming under safety car, almost the entire field came in including Pattison, who handed over to Osborne.
Twenty-one-year-old McLaren Automotive Factory Driver Ben Barnicoat got off to a perfect start in the opening British GT Championship weekend at Oulton Park, winning the first race of the season in the 570S GT4 of customer team track-club, in turn scoring the track-only Sports Series model its first victory of 2018 in global competition. Barnicoat drove perfectly in the treacherous conditions on Bank Holiday Monday morning, as heavy rain prior to the race made it a particularly intense affair for the drivers, negotiating the tight, twisty Cheshire circuit.
On the eve of the opening British GT Championship round at Oulton Park, McLaren Automotive has confirmed the extension of the official Safety Car partnership with the SRO-managed series. Throughout the season, a variety of models from the McLaren Sports Series will manage on-track safety and coordination of the bumper grid of GT cars, which will include six examples of the 570S GT4. The debut outing for the 2017 season will see the 540C Coupé lead the grid. The Safety Car role is truly fitting for a McLaren. As with every model produced for road or track since 1981, safety is a key attribute with a carbon fibre chassis at the heart of each Sports Series model. The 540C Coupé, 570S Coupé, 570GT and the 570S GT4 share the lightweight MonoCell II, providing the highest levels of occupant safety.
MINI Challenge will join the British GT Championship for the first time next year, cementing its place as one of Europe’s fastest-growing single-make racing championship. The news marks the biggest step yet for the popular championship and follows a recent agreement between MINI Challenge and MINI UK which will see the brand provide increased support through the 2017 race season.