Jonny's up to the challenge in European GT race
FIFE flyer Jonny Adam got his GT World Challenge Europe campaign off to the best possible start with a podium-topping performance.
He and Garage 59 team-mates Alexander West and Chris Goodwin were clear winners in the Pro-Am class in the Endurance Cup event at Imola in Italy on Sunday.
In a 46-car field, Kirkcaldy-born Adam, who took the last stint, finished an excellent 14th overall in their Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT3 and nine places clear of their nearest rivals.
Adam, who was Pro-Am champion in 2017, said: “The Aston Martin Vantage GT3 performed perfectly this weekend, and we’ve not had much chance to test it as a team prior to the start of the season so it was really satisfying.
“Chris and Alex both drove very well, which made my job easier in the final stint. This is a short championship with only four rounds, so to collect maximum points so early is really good for us. What a fantastic start.”
Forfar 20-year-old Sandy Mitchell, piloting the Barwell Motorsport Lamborghini Huracan Evo GT3 for the closing stages, was less fortunate.
He was also in the chase for a Pro-Am podium-finish when his charge was halted by a late-braking rival amid congestion, resulting in contact and damage to the car.
The repairs needed put paid to any hope of a decent finishing position, although Mitchell did manage to get back out for a final few laps to finish ninth in the category.
Having qualified second in class, Mitchell said: “It’s certainly not the result we anticipated. It’s disappointing but I’ve got to just put it down to a racing incident, move on, and get ready for the next race.”(Image: GT World Challenge Europe)
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Worse was to befall Dundonian Finlay Hutchison, also 20, who was leading the Silver class in the Haupt Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 when a car fire forced his retirement.
“There was smoke coming from the car and, when I got out I could see flames, we had no option other than to stop. But we’ve shown how competitive the car is and, hopefully, we’ll be back stronger for the next round.”(Image: Bonnie Lane)
Meanwhile, Perth’s Rory Skinner has completed his pre-season testing for the 2020 British Supersport Championship at Donington Park, leading all four sessions and dipping under the lap record on his new Tysers Yamaha YZF-R6.
After a best time of 1:08.450, the 18-year-old rider said: “Being so consistent after such a long lay off, and topping each session, is very encouraging for the season ahead.” The delayed competition starts at the Derbyshire circuit on August 8.
This weekend sees the Covid-impacted British Touring Car Championship get under way at Donington, with Scots Rory Butcher and Aiden Moffat hunting for glory.(Image: Motorbase Performance/Rory Butcher)
Reigning Independents’ champ and Motorbase Performance driver Butcher said: “We are ready to go and we are delighted that series organiser TOCA has been able to put together a near-complete season schedule. Now it’s over to us and the teams to provide the action and I can’t wait to get started.”
Meanwhile, Cheshire’s Oulton Park hosts the opening round of the British GT Championship – and there are a number of Scots who will fancy their chances. They include Scots-born Ian Loggie in his RAM Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 and GT4 graduate Lewis Proctor in Optimum’s McLaren 720S GT3.
Also switching up from GT4 is Dean Macdonald, who will also be in a 720S GT3, racing for 2 Seas Motorsport, while Sandy Mitchell returns to the series in his Barwell Lamborghini.