Alexander Sims makes his long-awaited Intelligent Money British GT Championship return next week after joining Century Motorsport’s BMW M4 GT3 for the final two rounds of this season’s campaign.
The former series runner-up partners Ginetta GT4 SuperCup graduates Henry Dawes and Darren Leung at Brands Hatch and Donington Park, respectively.
Sims earned his original BMW factory status through his British GT exploits alongside Marco Attard who, driving Ecurie Ecosse’s Z4, won the title in 2014 and finished second a year later. His final championship appearances came the following season when he re-joined Barwell – who also oversaw Ecurie Ecosse’s entries – for a handful of races.
He has since become one of the world’s top GT drivers, both in GT3 with BMW and GTE as part of Corvette’s IMSA and Le Mans programmes, while his versatility has also been evident in Formula E over the past four years.
“I absolutely loved my time in British GT so to be back for this year’s final two rounds represents a real bonus at the end of a long season,” said Sims who was also a TotalEnergies 24 Hours of Spa and Nurburgring 24 Hours winner with BMW’s previous GT3 model, the M6.
“It’s been a while since I last raced in British GT but I know the circuits and also the M4 from BMW’s Nurburgring programme so I shouldn’t be too rusty. In any case, my priority within the Pro-Am crew is to get Henry and Darren up to speed – a role I took a lot of satisfaction from when racing for Barwell. Time isn’t on our side but we’ll give it our best shot.”
His first partner, the 43-year-old Dawes, has spent the past two seasons with Century in the Ginetta GT4 SuperCup and is also a former Fun Cup Endurance champion.
“I’ve been part of the Century family for two years now so when Nathan [Freke] approached me about a GT3 outing with the M4 I couldn’t really resist,” he said. “I’ve learnt a lot in Ginetta SuperCup and British GT4 remains an option for next year but this was an opportunity that I couldn’t pass up, and especially as I’ll be racing with Alex who’s one of the best in the business. I’m realistic – we won’t have too much time to get up to speed – so this is more about getting to grips with a car that has more power and aero than the Ginetta before assessing my options for next year.”
His regular season rival Leung, meanwhile, stepped up to the championship with Assetto Motorsport at the start of this year after finishing second in 2021’s Ginetta GT Academy. His experience also extends to the Dubai 24 Hours and Abu Dhabi 6 Hours where he raced at the end of last season.
“I mentioned at the start of the year that I’d like to sample British GT at some point this season but I didn’t expect it to be in the GT3 class!” he said. “Obviously it’s a big step but one that I also feel ready for. I’ve made a lot of progress in the SuperCup this year – scoring eight class wins and challenging for overall podiums has given me a lot of confidence – so feel like now is the ideal time to test myself against the country’s top amateurs.”
Century’s new M4 has featured Betty Chen, David Holloway, Joel Eriksson and Angus Fender this year, although Brands Hatch will be the first race at which both drivers have changed. As such, and as per British GT regulations, a five-second penalty will apply during the car’s mandatory pitstop.
However, the entry’s full-season status means Dawes, Leung, Sims and Century are all eligible to score points at both Brands and Donington.