FP2: Turner and Nicoll-Jones help Aston top both classes at Snetterton
Darren Turner and Beechdean AMR maintained Aston Martin’s grip on practice at Snetterton by posting the fastest time of the day in FP2. The British manufacturer was also quickest in GT4 thanks to Academy Motorsport’s Matt Nicoll-Jones, although less than 0.2s covered the class’ top-six.
The gap between the overall top two of Turner and TF Sport’s Nicki Thiim to the chasing pack suggested both were on fresh tyres when setting their fastest times late in the hour-long session. The Dane initially leapt to the top as second practice entered its final 10 minutes, but his FIA WEC team-mate immediately responded by posting a 1m48.271s. That was 0.130s quicker than Thiim and almost a second under FP1’s best time, which was also set by the #11 Aston Martin.
Marco Sorensen in the second TF Sport entry helped Aston Martins lock out the top-three positions, while Yelmer Buurman’s late flyer moved the ERC Sport Mercedes-AMG above early pace-setter Maxime Martin in the Jetstream Motorsport V12 Vantage.
Phil Keen also improved late to give Barwell sixth ahead of Callum Macleod’s Team Parker Bentley and Jonny Adam’s Optimum Aston Martin.
The GT4 class was, if anything, even more competitive than it had been in the morning session, with a top-six featuring five manufacturers covered by less than 0.2s.
A new tyre run gave Academy Motorsport and Aston Martin’s Nicoll-Jones the fastest time of the day so far, his 1m59.288s beating the Equipe Verschuur McLaren shared by Finlay Hutchison and Dan Mckay by just 0.040s.
UltraTek Racing Team RJN bounced back from a tough first session to post the third fastest time after Jesse Anttila lapped his Nissan 370Z just 0.060s slower than Nicoll-Jones, while Scott Malvern – who topped FP1 – gave Team Parker’s Mercedes-AMG fourth.
Jan Jonck and Tom Wood made it two Academy Astons inside the top-five, while Tolman Motorsport’s Joe Osborne was fastest of the McLaren contingent in sixth.
Balfe’s McLaren and Century Motorsport’s #42 BMW completed the top-eight.
Qualifying for tomorrow’s two 60-minute races begins at 15:50 this afternoon.