- Dan Mason
Maiden British GT Podium For Andrew Gordon-Colebrooke At Oulton Opener
Andrew Gordon-Colebrooke has kick-started his 2020 British GT Championship season with his first podium finish in the series in the second of the season-opening pair of races at Oulton Park last weekend (1/2 August). The visit to Cheshire marked the start of a second season of British GT with Century Motorsport for the Buckinghamshire ace, as he looked to kick off the new campaign with a strong start at the circuit he made his series debut at last year. Teamed with Ben Hurst this season, Gordon-Colebrooke’s BMW M4 GT4 showed consistent pace on longer runs in particular during testing and free practice in the run-up to the main action of the weekend. Rivals found more pace when newer rubber went onto the cars for the short and sharp 10-minute qualifying session, with Gordon-Colebrooke wringing everything out of the BMW in the early stages. A good effort resulted in a grid position of seventh ahead of the two one-hour races on Sunday. In the first of those, the 27-year-old jumped into the BMW in the second half of the race and was given an opportunity to attack his rivals in the final stages thanks to a late safety car interruption. Looking at a top-five finish, Gordon-Colebrooke pressured the fifth-placed McLaren of Gus Bowers, narrowly missing out on a rush to the line as he finished sixth. The former Ginetta GT4 SuperCup racer was handed the opening stint of a frenetic second contest later that afternoon, and set about charging up the GT4 field from seventh on the grid. Picking off several cars in the first half-hour, he handed the car over in a brilliant third spot. With Hurst behind the wheel, the Century Motorsport car held the position behind a lengthy late safety car period to record Gordon-Colebrooke’s first British GT podium finish - eclipsing a previous best of fourth place. Andrew Gordon-Colebrooke: "We’ve started to learn how the car handles its tyres, and we’ve found that there’s room for improvement in our performance on newer rubber which means there will be more to come from us. The car has been running very well on used tyres this weekend, which puts us in good shape in the races. “Race two was one of those where everything sort of kicked off in front of me so I had to keep the nose clean on the first few laps. Contact between a Toyota and Ferrari boxed us in and we lost a bucket-load of time there, but still to come through all of that drama with a podium at the end is a really big positive. “Our pace was good, and once we settled down I was as quick as the leaders. It’s a shame we didn’t get the chance to gain more with the late safety car that lasted the rest of the race, but at the end of the day we still got a podium, my best result in British GT so far and some good points. There's a lot to be positive about, and we're now moving onto a few of our better tracks." With a strong start to the season in the bag, Gordon-Colebrooke next heads off to Donington Park in two weeks time (15/16 August) with the British GT party, hoping to carry on that momentum.
Image from Jakob Ebrey Photography.