07 Jun 2016
BRITISH GT RACE WINNER MORRIS AIMING TO CONTINUE MOMENTUM AS CHAMPIONSHIP PREPARES FOR THREE-HOUR SP
Fresh from his dominant maiden victory in the British GT Championship a week ago at Oulton Park in Cheshire, Bentley Continental GT3 racer Seb Morris cannot wait to be back on track so soon after the history-making win when round five takes place at Silverstone this weekend, 11th/12th June.
With the joyous celebrations from the round four victory – the first in British GT for the Continental GT3 – still reverberating seven days on, the Marford 20-year-old and team-mate Rick Parfitt Jnr are now setting their sights on continuing their superb momentum at the home of British motorsport.
Sunday’s big race, the ‘Silverstone 500’, will be contested on the full Grand Prix Circuit layout at the Northamptonshire venue and, at three hours in duration, will be the longest endurance challenge of the season – and of Seb’s burgeoning GT career.
“Silverstone should be a good weekend and the Bentley should be strong there”, said the MSA Team UK driver, “We’ll obviously have to factor in the success penalty from the win at Oulton, and the BOP [Balance of Performance], but we’re all feeling confident for the three-hour.
“Oulton was an amazing weekend, fantastic to get our first win and the first for the Continental in the championship. Hopefully it’s going to be a springboard for the rest of the season, to be so fast at Oulton makes us very positive for how we should go on the big GP track at Silverstone. We have an inherently good car and plan to give it some beans next weekend to keep the momentum going.”
Last weekend’s visit to Oulton really was a breakthrough event for the Team Parker Racing duo and confirmed the pace which had been clear to see from the first event of the season at Brands Hatch back in April.
In with a chance of victory there, the team-mates ultimately took second position off the back of a memorable opening round pole position. Scoring more points in round two at Rockingham, despite a weekend of misfortune, the Oulton Park double-header delivered a deserved return to the podium.
Taking their second haul of silverware of the campaign with third place in round three, having been robbed of another potential win when the No.31 Bentley was blocked into its pit box at the driver change by a rival McLaren, the Team Parker drivers dominated the second race of the weekend.
Having starred in qualifying with his second pole position of his rookie GT campaign, Welshman Seb made a faultless start and opened a sensational lead of around 13 seconds prior to handing the car over to Parfitt Jnr at the midway point – the latter producing a similarly impressive performance.
Aside from the scale of the victory, something else to consider for the team’s GT3 title rivals was the searing pace Seb showed in round four. Not only did the multiple car racing champion set the fastest lap of the race by some margin, he shattered the circuit lap record by a mammoth 0.7 seconds.
As well as holding third place in the British GT Championship standings and the Pro-Am GT3 title race, Seb also leads the prestigious Sunoco Whelen Challenge – a contest which compares driver performances across a variety of categories. The competition offers a sensational prize for the eventual winner, a fully funded outing in the Daytona 24 Hours in America next year.
“It really is fantastic to be leading the Sunoco Whelen Challenge”, said Seb, “It’s a very high-profile competition and obviously carries an amazing prize. If we can keep going how we have been so far this year in British GT, who knows – we could be paying a visit to Daytona next year!”
Following two free practice sessions at Silverstone GP Circuit on Saturday, 11th June, where the championship will be joined by the GT4 European Series, qualifying will begin at 15.50. On Sunday, 12th June, a brief 10-minute morning warm-up will take place at 09.00 with the three-hour race scheduled to get underway at 12.50. LIVE ON MOTORS TV at 12.30
2016 British GT Championship GT3 Driver Standings (after Rd4):
3rd Seb Morris & Rick Parfitt Jnr, 68.5pts
2016 British GT Championship Pro-Am GT3 Driver Standings (after Rd4):
3rd Seb Morris & Rick Parfitt Jnr, 70pts
2016 British GT Championship GT3 Team Standings (after Rd4):
3rd Team Parker Racing, 68.5pts