At a gloriously sunny Oulton Park circuit, Andrew Gordon-Colebrooke made his British GT debut with the Century Motorsport team and came away with an impressive top ten finish despite having to endure a challenging weekend.
After having completed an extensive winter testing programme, Gordon-Colebrooke and his Century Motorsport team came into the opening round of the championship in Cheshire with a positive outlook. “I am really excited to be in the British GT Championship this season. It’s great to be back with Century Motorsport, who ran me in the Ginetta GT4 SuperCup last year. We had a good pre-season and I was looking forward to making my debut.”
Gordon-Colebrooke enjoyed a very positive start to the weekend in his Century Motorsport BMW M4 GT4 during practice on Friday, showing impressive pace on both new and old tyres which boosted his and the team’s confidence ahead of qualifying.
Sadly though, qualifying didn’t go according to plan. Gordon-Colebrooke and his team-mate Angus Fender were unable to capitalise on their strong pace and struggled throughout both GT4 qualifying sessions.
“It was really disappointing. After finishing third and fourth in both practice sessions we should have been on course for a top five result. We just under-performed and other people found performance where we didn’t.”
In Monday’s opening one-hour race, Gordon-Colebrooke took the start in the #43 Century Motorsport BMW M4 GT4 and while a number of his class rivals hit trouble, the Lilingstone Dayrell-based driver kept his nose clean and enjoyed a strong run.
Gordon-Colerooke climbed up the order from 12th to put his WHIreland Wealth Management backed machine in ninth position. By the time the pitstops had cycled through, they were up to eighth and Fender maintained that place to the finish, ensuring they came away with four all important championship points.
“My stint was good. I managed to fight my way past some of the opposition and stay out of trouble during the first stage of the race. I lost a bit of time behind a slow moving GT3 Aston Martin that had just left the pits. If it wasn’t for that, we might have been able to have finished a little bit higher up, but we will take the points.”
Gordon-Colebrooke’s team-mate Fender took the start of the second race that afternoon, meaning the Buthlaw and Tyrrell Automotive sponsored driver would have to wait until just after the half hour mark before getting in the car.
After taking over from teammate Fender (who had run as high as fifth during the pitstops), Gordon-Colebrooke looked set for a top ten finish at least. A loose turbo pipe put paid to that though, as Andrew had to come back to the pits immediately for the Century Motorsport mechanics to fix the problem.
“That was frustrating. We were on for a potential podium, but a turbo hose came loose after the pitstop. We lost all of the ground that we had made up. It was a real shame, but there are still plenty of positives to take away from this weekend. I’m sure that luck will balance itself out over the course of the season and I am looking forward to the next round at Snetterton already.”
Andrew Gordon-Colebrooke and the Century Motorsport team will be in action again next month (18-19 May) at Snetterton in Norfolk. All the British GT races this season are available to stream live on the championship’s official website.