In a copy and paste result, RAM Racing and R Racing remained the class of the GT3 and GT4 grids respectively during second practice at the Autodromo do Algarve, even if the result didn’t look to be heading that way until the final moments.
Raffaele Marciello left things late to make his mark aboard the #15 Mercedes-AMG, allowing team-mate John Ferguson the majority of the track time, before hopping aboard and making it four fastest times from four sessions (pre-event tests included).
For much of the hour, Barwell Motorsport was in the box seat, with Sandy Mitchell’s early effort setting the bar for everybody else before he handed to Shaun Balfe. Mitchell’s best stood until the final 12 minutes, when Marciello dipped under it by 0.1s. Mitchell did get ready to head back out for a final run late on, but his hopes were dashed by a red flag. With two cars needing recovery and just a few minutes remaining, it ended the session prematurely.
Phil Keen and Ian Loggie were third fastest in the #1 2 Seas Motorsport Mercedes-AMG, ahead of the championship-leading sister car of James Cottingham and Jonny Adam. Andrew Howard and Nicki Thiim (in for Ross Gunn for this round) were fifth, with Century Motorsport’s BMW M4 of Darren Leung and Dan Harper completing the top six.
R Racing may have held on to its top spot in GT4, but it wasn’t the same driver as this time Josh Miller helped put the Aston Martin at the front, giving Seb Hopkins a breather.
Miller rammed home the team’s potential by hitting the front on lap three and never looking back. Once again the DTO McLaren was the biggest threat, with Aston Millar and Josh Rowledge getting within a few tenths of the Vantage, but once again lost any hope of a late charge to another technical issue that stopped the car.
Jack Brown and Charles Clark put the runaway points-leading Optimum McLaren third, with Freddie Tomlinson and Stuart Middleton fourth in the #56 Raceway Ginetta. Carl Cavers and Lewis Plato were fifth for Century Motorsport – and top in Pro-Am – ahead of the sister car of Michael Johnston and Chris Salkeld.
Next up is qualifying, which is scheduled for 14:45.