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Motorbase grab GT pole position at their home circuit

Saturday, June 23 2012

The Motorbase pairing of Steve Parish and Stephen Jelley have taken pole position for tomorrow's British GT Championship race at Brands Hatch. The Wrotham-based team will share the front row with the Mtech Ferrari of Duncan Cameron and Matt Griffin, with the Beechdean Aston Martin of Jonathan Adam and Andrew Howard third, the trio separated by a mere two hundredths of a second.

An eventful Ginetta race immediately before qualifying had left the track surface a little tricky for the first GT session. Nevertheless, with just half an hour for both drivers in each car to set a competitive time, no-one had the luxury of waiting time in the pits and therefore the track became very busy.

The RJN Motorsport Nissan set the early pace with a time barely affected by the surface conditions, indeed it built up speed as the session progressed. The Mtech team were next to top the table in their Ferrari 458, with Motorbase number 11 of Daniele Perfetti and Michael Caine taking second.

It didn't take long before most of the cars pitted to swap drivers and with a third of the session having run, only a few cars remained on the circuit. For a while there was little in the way of improvement amongst the field, although Adam was picking up fast sector times in the Beechdean Aston Martin. Eventually he strung a lap together and took his place at the top of the leaderboard by three tenths of a second.

Joe Osbourne staged an attack in the Trackspeed Porsche that only placed him fifth behind three Ferraris as the Beechdean car pitted, with the drivers satisfied at their afternoon's work. Five minutes remained and Nicolas Armindo took second in the number 31 Trackspeed 997, nearly three tenths adrift of provisional pole. Jelley then bettered the best time by two hundredths in the Motorbase car, before Mtech's Griffin split the front row.

After this intense burst of activity, the times remained static and at the end of the session, Motorbase took pole position at their home track from the Mtech Ferrari, with the Beechdean Aston Martin third. Next up were two more Porsches, the first Trackspeed car ahead of Motorbase's second entry. Optimum Motorsport posted an excellent sixth for their Ginetta, from the Ferrari 458s of Rosso Verde and Scuderia Vittoria.

GT4 went the way of Ginetta by just three hundredths of a second from the Lotus Sport Evora. Tomorrow's 2-hour British GT Championship race takes place at 14:10.

Avon Tyres British GT Championship Qualifying

1, Motorbase, Steve Parish/Stephen Jelley, Porsche 997 GT3 R, 1:25.910s
2, Mtech, Duncan Cameron/Matt Griffin, Ferrari 458 Italia, GT3, +0.010s
3, Beechdean, Andrew Howard/Jonathan Adam, Aston Martin Vantage GT3, +0.021s
4, Trackspeed, David Ashburn/Nicolas Armindo, Porsche 997 GT3 R, +0.302s
5, Motorbase, Danielle Perfetti/ Michael Caine, Porsche 997 GT3 R, +0.313s
6, Optimum Motorsport, George Murrells/Luke Hines, Ginetta G55, +0.324s
7, Rosso Verde, Hector Lester/Allan Simonsen, Ferrari 458 Italia, +0.325s
8, Scuderia Vittoria, John Dhillon/Aaron Scott, Ferrari 458 Italia, +0.342s
9, Trackspeed, Steve Tandy/Joe Osborne, Porsche 997 GT3 R, +0.376s
10, RJN Motorsport, Alex Buncombe/Jann Mardenborough, Nissan GTR GT3, +0.423s

Tickets for the British F3/GT Championships at Brands Hatch on 23/24 June are available on the gate for £21 on Sunday, with free admission for children aged 12 and under. For more information call 0843 453 9000 or click here.