> Result: Free Practice 2
Leo Machitski and Dennis Lind did their championship ambitions no harm at all by finishing fastest during second practice at Donington Park, giving the Barwell Motorsport crew the edge heading into qualifying this afternoon.
John Ferguson and Jamie Caroline continued their strong start to the weekend by topping the GT4 order for the second successive session in the Toyota Gazoo Racing UK Supra, even if their session ended with the car in the gravel.
While the GT3 title can’t be settled today, Machitski and Lind laid down a marker with the Danish ace taking control midway through the session with a lap that wouldn’t be beaten.
Euan Hankey’s McLaren, Phil Keen’s Lamborghini and Marcus Clutton’s McLaren all traded the top time before the twin Barwell Motorsport Lamborghinis joined the fray.
First Sandy Mitchell put the #1 Huracan he shares with Adam Balon on top, before Lind chipped away at the deficit and eventually pulled almost three tenths clear at the top of the times on his third flier.
The two Barwell cars remained clear until the flag, with only Mia Flewitt/Hankey’s Balfe McLaren able to get within four tenths of them before the finish. A fine effort from Sam Neary brought the Team Abba Mercedes-AMG he shares with father Richard into fourth, while Keen and Michael Igoe’s WPI Lamborghini finished fifth fastest.
The RAM Racing Mercedes-AMG of Ian Loggie and Yelmer Buurman was sixth, ahead of Morgan Tillbrook/Clutton’s McLaren and Nick Jones/Scott Malvern’s Team Parker Racing Porsche.
While the Toyota Gazoo Racing team may have finished top of the GT4 times for a second straight session, it wasn’t all plain sailing for John Ferguson and Jamie Caroline, who lost much of the session to a combination of track limit penalties and an off.
Academy Motorsport’s Ford Mustang made a flying start to the session, with Matt Cowley setting an early best that was good enough to keep the car on top until Caroline nipped ahead by just over a tenth of a second at the halfway point.
The Toyota was then pinged with a five-minute stop-go penalty for straying beyond track limits, and then Caroline suffered a spin into the gravel at McLeans that left the car beached.
Cowley and Moore remained second fastest, while a late effort from Mike Simpson lifted the guesting CWS Ginetta he shares with Colin White to third. Richard Williams and Sennan Fielding were fourth in Steller’s Audi, with Matt Topham and Darren Turner fifth fastest in the Newbridge Motorsport Aston Martin – that car only completed five laps after a clash with the Tolman Motorsport Bentley GT3, which consigned the Aston to its garage with damage.
David Holloway and Bradley Ellis were sixth quickest in the Century Aston, ahead of the twin RJN McLarens of first Michael Benyahia/Alain Valente and then Katie Milner/Harry Hayek.
Qualifying takes place at 16:15 BST. Watch it live on SRO’s GT World YouTube channel.