Adam and Broadhurst top wet/dry opening practice at Oulton
> Result: FP1
A late improvement on a drying track helped Optimum Motorsport’s Jonny Adam top the opening practice session of the season at Oulton Park this morning, while Michael Broadhurst began his British GT career in style by giving Fox Motorsport the fastest GT4 time.
Overnight rain and a chilly start ensured slick tyres only appeared after two-thirds of the 60-minute session. Barwell Motorsport’s Phil Keen was the first to set a representative time before Adam lapped three tenths faster with just two minutes remaining to end opening practice on top.
The Scot – who shares his Optimum Aston Martin with Flick Haigh – lapped in 1m35.321s to end up 0.258s faster than fellow AMR factory driver Darren Turner, who also jumped up the order late on. His Beechdean AMR V12 Vantage was just half a tenth quicker than the Keen-driven Lamborghini and 0.1s clear of Rob Bell’s Balfe Motorsport McLaren.
Jonny Cocker claimed fifth on his return to the series with Barwell, while early pace-setter Nicki Thiim completed the top-six for TF Sport.
GT4 also saw late changes after both Matthew George and then Jesse Anttila led in the wetter conditions.
But ultimately it was Fox’s Broadhurst who prevailed thanks to his 1m44.427s effort, which was 0.296s quicker than fellow debutant Patrik Matthiesen could muster for reigning champions HHC Motorsport.
Finlay Hutchison again emphasised the potential of European GT4 Series frontrunners Equipe Verschuur by claiming third, while Ben Green’s Century Motorsport BMW M4 made it as many different manufacturers in the top-four.
However, with times in both classes roughly a second slower than yesterday’s test, more is expected in the second of the day’s 60-minute practice sessions, which begins at 12:10.