Greystone GT score maiden race win

Greystone GT score maiden race win

Greystone GT score maiden race win with Mason and Lancaster in GT Cup

Greystone GT became race winners for the first time as Rich Mason and Jon Lancaster scored an extraordinary GT Cup victory on a chaotic weekend at Silverstone. It was an inspired strategy call that put the #22 McLaren 570S GT4 into prime position in the GTH category – the most hotly-contested class in GT Cup – in Saturday afternoon’s Endurance Race. An on-track incident brought out the safety car close to half-distance, and it was still on-track when the mandatory pit window – in which all cars must spend at least 70 seconds stationary and driver changes are allowed – opened on the 29-minute mark.

While most of the field had passed the pit entry for the 11th time when the window opened, several cars running lower down – such as Rich’s McLaren – were able to come in, swap drivers and rejoin the action while their rivals ran at slow speed. When green-flag racing resumed next time around and the majority of the field pitted, it was Leeds racer Jon – now having relieved Harrogate-based Rich – who led. The former European Le Mans Series champion clung on to that advantage too, winning by just 0.032 seconds for a memorable first success for Greystone GT. It was a magnificent result for Rich, who was competing in only his third racing event, and for Silverstone-based Greystone GT, whose race team was established less than a year ago and has taken on the challenge of GTH with three rookie competitors.

Iain Campbell and Duncan Tappy were fourth with Mark Hopton and Adam Carroll scoring their best result of 2021 in with a fine performance in fifth. Rich was sixth in Sunday’s sprint race while a 20-second success penalty – applied due to the #22 car’s class win 24 hours earlier – restricted he and Jon to ninth in the finale. Both Iain and Mark were involved in major incidents in Sunday morning’s sprint; the former after scoring a career-best fifth place in qualifying.

Iain’s McLaren became a launching ramp for a rival and suffered heavy right-side damage – the Sandhurst racer fortunately unhurt – while contact a few laps later also put Mark, from Repton, out. Incredible work from the Greystone GT mechanics – for which they were later named ‘Team of the Weekend’ got both cars back on-track, and while Iain and Duncan used it to climb to fifth by the chequered flag, Mark and Adam retired with a clutch issue. The event had begun with with Iain scoring his best solo finish to date in fifth in the opening sprint with Mark and Rich 11th and 13th. Iain and regular co-driver Oli Webb moved up a place to seventh in the standings with Rich/Jon 11th and Mark/Adam 12th.

Rich Mason said: “It’s absolutely fantastic to get the first win for myself, for Jon and for Greystone GT – and in only my third-ever race weekend. It wasn’t expected and we certainly had a bit of luck that our track position gave us the chance to do the driver change before most of the other cars, but it was a genius move by Katie [Lawrence – Race Engineer] and the team in the pits to call us in at the last minute. That won us the race because Jon’s such an experienced and fast driver that when you put him in the lead, he’s not likely to give it up. The set-up at Greystone GT is first-class and we couldn’t have done it without them.”

Jon Lancaster said: “It’s one of the strangest wins I’ve ever had, but naturally we’re all over the moon. For Rich to get this win in only his third-ever race weekend is pretty special and shows not only the progress he’s made behind the wheel, but also the fantastic job Greystone GT have done to get us into this position. We’re not kidding ourselves by thinking we’re the fastest, but we were where we needed to be when it mattered and the team made a perfect call to pit us just as the window opened. I’m going home very pleased.”

Mark McLoughlin, Team Principal, said: “To get the first win under feels fantastic. The circumstances were maybe a little fortunate, but Rich and Jon’s crew made an excellent call to pit them at the earliest possible opportunity and reaped the rewards. Rich, Mark and Iain have all taken a big step forward again this weekend, which is exactly what we’d hoped for. Everybody’s worked so hard, and after the tireless work by the mechanics to fix both Iain and Mark’s cars after Race Three, being named Team of the Weekend is a justified reward for them.”


 
GT Cup Calendar 2021
 
Round 1 – April 10-11: Donington Park National
Round 2 – May 1-2: Brands Hatch GP
Round 3 – June 5-6: Snetterton 300
Round 4 – July 3: Oulton Park International
Round 5 – August 15-16: Silverstone GP
Round 6 – September 18-19: Donington Park GP
Round 7 – October 2-3: Snetterton 300
 

Greystone GT  finish in top five on  race debut at  Donington Park

Greystone GT finish in top five on race debut at Donington Park

Greystone GT finish in top five on race debut at Donington Park

Greystone GT finish in top five on race debut at Donington Park

Greystone GT scored a pair of top-five finishes as the new team made its race debut in a record-breaking GT Cup season-opener at Donington Park last weekend. The racing division of the Silverstone-based organisation was only formed last October and had pulled out all the stops to enter three immaculately-presented McLaren 570S GT4s as part of a 38-car grid – the biggest in GT Cup history – at the East Midlands track. Rookies Iain Campbell, Mark Hopton and Rich Mason were paired with international racing champions Oli Webb, Adam Carroll and Jon Lancaster, whose speed and experience has proved invaluable in preparing them for their first taste of racing. The result was that Jon and Oli – both European Le Mans Series Champions – were able to partner Rich and Iain to fourth and fifth-placed finishes in the fourth and final race of the weekend with Mark and Adam seventh.

That final race – a 50-minute enduro in which Sporting drivers like Iain, Mark and Rich are allowed to share with experienced professionals – had featured a three-way fight for fourth between Oli, Adam and Jon, which turned on its head late on. First, former IndyCar racer Adam was given a stop-go penalty for being one second under the minimum 75-second minimum time when he took over the #77 McLaren from Mark, falling from fifth to seventh. Then, after finishing fourth on the road, the #23 machine of Iain and Oli was penalised five-seconds post-race for overtaking behind the safety car, dropping the duo to fifth and promoting Rich and Jon in their place. Iain, from Sandurst, had finished eighth in each day’s Sprint Race – which the pro racers are barred from competing in by series regulations – and combined with Knutsford racer Oli to finish sixth in Saturday’s Pitstop Race. Rich, from Harrogate, had taken 11th in each of the Sprints, but a late charge from Leeds racer Jon brought them back to ninth by the chequered flag in Saturday’s Pitstop Race. Repton racer Mark made excellent progress across the two-day meeting. He was not classified as a finisher in the opening Sprint Race after a late incident, but with the experience gained he claimed his first series point with 10th on Sunday.

Teaming up with Adam in the Pitstop races, the pair were 11th on Saturday before improving to seventh 24 hours later. They are 12th in the GTH Championship points with Rich and Jon in 11th and Iain and Oli ninth.

Rich Mason (#22 McLaren 570S GT4) said: “We had some highs and lows and I made a couple of schoolboy errors on Saturday, but I learnt a lot and I managed to get quicker every time I got in the car. It was just an amazing experience and the team did a fantastic job of helping us to get up to speed. It was great to see the progress on Sunday, when I qualified half a second quicker than I’d been the previous day, and that really helped us to set things up for us to finish fourth in the Sunday Pitstop Race. I definitely plan to be back later in the year because I’ve really bitten the bug now.”

Jon Lancaster (#22 McLaren 570S GT4) said: “I’m quite surprised we got the fourth place at the end, especially as Rich and I had only done two days together before the build-up to the Donington races. The Greystone GT team is very professional and incredibly well-run and that kind of environment helps everyone to work together better. It’s certainly been good for Rich because he’s massively under-practiced compared to many of the other drivers and his positivity and willingness to solve problems has just been amazing.”

 

Iain Campbell (#23 McLaren 570S GT4): “It was a real baptism of fire with the biggest grid in GT Cup history and on the shortest track on the calendar, but a hugely enjoyable time. The professionalism of the team and the patience Oli’s shown has been brilliant and it’s really helped me to settle into the car faster. I was pretty happy with my driving on Saturday, but then we just kept on improving things over the weekend – by the races I was lapping quicker than I’d been in qualifying. I think that’s the key area I want to work on now to get as high up the grid as possible and give ourselves a chance for better results.”

Oli Webb (#23 McLaren 570S GT4): “We’ve had some really promising results this weekend and Iain should be very proud of that. He’s a rookie that’s lapped Donington half a second faster than he’s ever gone in testing in the McLaren and only two or three tenths slower than the reigning GT Cup champions, so that’s a really good effort. Don’t forget that this weekend was his first rolling start, his first safety-car period etc. We know what we have to work on between now and Brands Hatch to help Iain extract a bit more from himself and the car and I’m sure we can get there quickly.”

Mark Hopton (#77 McLaren 570S GT4): “What a fantastic experience; I’m still buzzing! Sure we had plenty of highs and lows, but I loved every minute and the last race – by which time I felt I was getting the hang of things – was great. Having 38 cars on the grid, all from different classes and with different levels of speed, meant you were either lapping or being lapped all the time and that took quite some time to get used to. But the team and Adam worked really hard to prepare me and now I know a lot more of what I should expect at Brands Hatch next month.”

Adam Carroll (#77 McLaren 570S GT4): “It’s been such a positive start for everybody involved with Greystone GT over the weekend. We’ve had highs and lows, but we’ve definitely finished on a high and that seventh place could easily have been fourth were it not for a penalty that really isn’t anybody’s fault. Mark was excited about this weekend but now he knows for sure how different racing is compared to his experience. He did a really good job, learnt very quickly and I know we can move forwards at Brands Hatch.”

Mark McLoughlin, Team Principal: “I can’t even begin to say how proud I am of the whole team. We knew this weekend would be a huge challenge; our first race event as part of the GT Cup’s biggest-ever grid. Plus we entered the biggest class with the highest number of pro drivers, but we’ve come out if it having had a fantastic experience. Everyone dug deep, be it drivers, technicians or operations staff and I really can’t wait for Brands Hatch. We know we have some things to improve on, but I’d call it a very positive experience.”


 
GT Cup Calendar 2021
 
Round 1 – April 10-11: Donington Park National
Round 2 – May 1-2: Brands Hatch GP
Round 3 – June 5-6: Snetterton 300
Round 4 – July 3: Oulton Park International
Round 5 – August 15-16: Silverstone GP
Round 6 – September 18-19: Donington Park GP
Round 7 – October 2-3: Snetterton 300
 

GT Cup 2021

GT Cup 2021

2021 GT Cup

Greystone GT is delighted to announce the entry of a third McLaren 570S GT4 for the opening round of the GT Cup at Donington Park on April 10-11. Racing newcomer Rich Mason will be partnered by international sportscar racing champion Jon Lancaster in the GTH class in an extra car to complement the full-time entries of Mark Hopton/Adam Carroll and Iain Campbell/Oli Webb.

Rich, from Harrogate, was a regular competitor in club-level motocross during the 1990s, and has been part of the Greystone GT family for several years; beginning his relationship with the Silverstone-based team through its renowned Supercar Trackday programme. He later expanded his horizons by stepping up to a track-based programme behind the wheel of a Ginetta G55 GT4 and has, since last Summer, continued to build his experience in the McLaren.

Jon, 32, has made winning international races a habit during a professional circuit-racing career that began in 2006. Runner-up in the Formula Renault Eurocup in 2007, the Leeds driver later won races in the intensely competitive Formula 3 Euro Series, Formula Renault 3.5 and GP2 Series while on the single-seater ladder towards F1. He began racing sportscars in 2013 in the FIA World Endurance Championship and brilliantly claimed the overall European Le Mans Series title two years later. Last season he raced in both the ELMS and WEC and has twice contested the Le Mans 24 Hours.

The 570s GT4, whose livery bears resemblance to McLaren’s ultra-successful F1 campaigns of the 1980s, is set to enter further GT Cup races during the latter stages of the season. Dates and venues will be announced at a later date once decided.

What is Greystone GT?
Created in 2016 by Mark McLoughlin, a single-seater racing champion and former Business Manager of McLaren GT, to run the UK’s best owner-Supercar Trackdays, Greystone GT has grown into a destination for enthusiastic drivers who want to take their on-track experience to the next level. The 2020 season was the most successful to date for Greystone GT, who staged 14 track-based events; adding the new High-Performance Test Day concept to its Supercar Trackdays. For the past three years it has maintained a growing fleet of GT racing cars for high-performance track use, while also developing a programme to take enthusiastic drivers from Supercar Trackdays up to racecar ownership and through to competitive race action. Having relocated to a new home at Silverstone in October 2020 and appointed Tim Mullen as Team Manager, to be supported by a team of internationally-established technical and operations staff, Greystone GT is ready to embark on a new era on-track.

How does the GT Cup work?
The GT Cup is a UK-based racing series for GT racing cars. Each event features practice, qualifying, two sprint races of 25-minute duration and two longer 50-minute pitstop races with driver changes allowed*. The emphasis is placed on giving Sporting drivers like Mark and Iain as much track time as possible, meaning professionals like Adam and Oli are restricted to taking part in practice and the second 25-minute stint of each pitstop. Seven rounds will be held at the UK’s best racetracks between April and October with live streaming from all events from Race Television.
*Except Oulton Park, which features two pitstops races of 40 minutes only

Rich Mason: “I’m excited to start racing in the GT Cup. It’s looking like such a high-quality series this year that I know it’s going to be tough, but we’re just going to take things one step at a time and try to make some good progress. The Greystone GT team have prepared me well for this, and the work Jon and I have done together since last October in the McLaren has left me reasonably confident that I push myself to the limit, but not beyond it, and just keep listening and learning. At the moment we’re only confirmed for the first event, but I reckon we’ll add a few more in the second half of the season.”

 
Jon Lancaster: “I’m pretty excited to be racing in a UK series for the first time since 2006, and in the McLaren too, which is such an iconic name in motor racing and one that most drivers would dream of getting behind the wheel of. Rich and I have worked together since last October and I can see a clear line of progression in his driving; something that’s only going to continue as he gains experience in racing. The GT Cup looks super-competitive this year with maybe it’s best-ever line-up of drivers, and it’s great to be a part of it. We’re not really setting any targets other than to make sure Rich has a good time and gets really confident with the car in a race situation so we can help take him to the next level.”
 
Mark McLoughlin, Team Principal: “It’s fantastic to be able to add a third car to the line-up for Donington and potentially a few more events later in the season. It’a also thoroughly satisfying to know that we’ve been able to help Rich move from trackday driver to fully-fledged racer in one of the UK’s most competitive GT series in just a couple of years. All three of our sporting drivers in the GT Cup have come into Greystone GT in the same way, so it’s great to know that our work behind the scenes is equipping drivers like Rich with what they need to take the step into racing. I’m sure he and Jon will work well together and move forwards through what’s sure to be an exciting campaign.”

 
GT Cup Calendar 2021
 
Round 1 – April 10-11: Donington Park National
Round 2 – May 1-2: Brands Hatch GP
Round 3 – June 5-6: Snetterton 300
Round 4 – July 3: Oulton Park International
Round 5 – August 15-16: Silverstone GP
Round 6 – September 18-19: Donington Park GP
Round 7 – October 2-3: Snetterton 300
 

ELMS 4 Hours of Monza

ELMS 4 Hours of Monza

Algarve Pro Racing podium charge thwarted by Full Course Yellows at Monza

Algarve Pro Racing was on course for podium finishes in the European Le Mans Series (ELMS) 4 Hours of Monza (9-11 October).

Despite damp and slippery track conditions, the Algarve Pro Racing Team were in contention for silverware at the ‘Temple of Speed’, but the team’s strategy was thwarted by Full Course Yellows that enabled many of its rivals to pit with a minimal time-loss.

Jon Lancaster (#24 Algarve Pro Racing ORECA 07 LMP2): “It’s frustrating that we’ve been unable to reach our potential when we’ve been capable of fighting for the podium in practically every race this year, but it’s all down to bad luck. Henning (Enqvist) made a great start and drove superbly throughout his stints. Everything seemed to be going our way, until we were unable to capitalise on a badly timed Full Course Yellow that occurred just five minutes before Henning’s minimum drivetime was up. Whether to keep Henning in for another stint was a really tough call in the moment and we need look into how much of an impact that decision had on our final result.  We had a difficult start to the week, as testing on Thursday and free practice on Friday was plagued by a suspected engine issue and a rear damper problem. Everyone worked flat-out to find fixes and then get on top of the setup, but our balance work was speculative, and the car wasn’t quite perfect in qualifying or race trim. Algarve Pro Racing is doing all the right stuff and trophies were there for us today. We just don’t need any more bad luck, and I hope we can end on a high on the team’s home soil in Portimao.”

2020 Calendar
  • 4 Hours of Le Castellet - July 19 > 6th
  • 4 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps - August 9 > 12th
  • 4 Hours of Barcelona - August 29 > DNF
  • 4 Hours of Monza - October 11 > 9th
  • 4 Hours of Portimao - November 1

About The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company

Goodyear is one of the world’s largest tire companies. It employs about 63,000 people and manufactures its products in 47 facilities in 21 countries around the world. Its two Innovation Centers in Akron, Ohio, and Colmar-Berg, Luxembourg, strive to develop state-of-the-art products and services that set the technology and performance standard for the industry. For more information about Goodyear and its products, go to www.goodyear.com/corporate.

You can also follow us on Twitter @Goodyearpress.

ELMS 4 Hours of Spa

ELMS 4 Hours of Spa

Algarve Pro Racing denied top five result in dramatic ELMS 4 Hours of Spa

Algarve Pro Racing was on for a solid top five finish until its bold and daring race strategy was thwarted in the European Le Mans Series (ELMS) 4 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps (7-9 August).

The Portugal-based team ultimately ended a drama-filled race at Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps in 12th in the #24 car of Jon Lancaster, with Henning Enqvist and Loic Duval.

In testing on Wednesday (5 August), Algarve Pro Racing focused all its attention on optimising its long-run performance, although the same was true of free practice, because rather than pushing for headline times in FP1 and FP2, the Goodyear technical partner used the sessions to learn more about the slick tyres ahead of Sunday’s four-hour race. Everything went as anticipated; A qualifying lap of 2m 04.644s from Lancaster was good enough for seventh, although the Algarve Pro driver was third of the Goodyear runners limited to a single timed run.

Enqvist took the first stint in the #24 car, losing track position during the sensible opening laps, but Algarve Pro’s prospects looked strong. In eighth position, Enqvist’s attention was initially held by the pursuing #35 BHK Motorsport car, but the #31 Panis Racing entry soon emerged as the Swede’s main threat. Unfortunately, places were lost after a protracted Safety Car intervention, Enqvist falling to the outskirts of the top ten, where he faced a growing challenge from the #50 Graff and #39 entries. The intensifying fight ultimately cost Enqvist time and allowed the #25 ORECA to take over as the lead Algarve Pro Racing contender after the first round of fuel stops, having pitted out of sequence with the bulk of the LMP2 field on lap 18. However, the running order changed again when Algarve Pro switched the #24 crew to an alternate strategy by installing Lancaster and brimming the car with fuel much earlier than anticipated.

The spotlight was firmly on Lancaster, who lapped at roughly the same speed as the leaders, even in traffic, and seemed well-placed to pick off several rivals as pit strategies unfolded. Algarve Pro’s tactical gamble, combined with Lancaster’s sublime pace, saw the #24 crew go from 13th to fourth with an assailable deficit to the top three runners. In fact, Lancaster got to within eight seconds of the podium while eking out 19 laps on a tank of fuel as track temperatures soared to 50 Celsius, but opportunistic stops by other LMP2 teams during a Full Course Yellow (FCY) negated Algarve Pro’s strategic advantage. Wet Goodyear tyres were kept close at hand, but it wasn’t until later, that the heavens opened and a wet track was declared. Algarve Pro responded to the deteriorating grip levels by boxing Duval for grooved Goodyears, but to the team’s frustration, the rain dissipated quickly, and a stop for slicks and to fuel the #24 car to the finish was conducted with 40 minutes remaining. #24 enjoyed the cooler conditions and matched the leaders for pace in the 2m 08s to ultimately receive the chequered flag in 12th.

Jon Lancaster (#24 Algarve Pro Racing ORECA 07 LMP2): “A mixture of bad luck, misjudgements and a bit of risk-taking to make up for what we had lost at the start made for a frustrating race. There’s no reason why that couldn’t have reached the podium, so we’ll analyse the way the race panned out to hopefully do better next weekend in the FIA World Endurance Championship 6 Hours of Spa. We’re always learning and making positive things happen, so it’s a shame we haven’t been able to collect points. If we can qualify higher up the grid we should be capable of converting our pace into results in the remaining races. I’m very much looking forward to the FIA WEC at Spa, where we will apply what we’ve learnt to hopefully come away with something strong.”

2020 Calendar
  • 4 Hours of Le Castellet - July 19 > 6th
  • 4 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps - August 9 > 12th
  • 4 Hours of Barcelona - August 29 > DNF
  • 4 Hours of Monza - October 11 > 9th
  • 4 Hours of Portimao - November 1

About The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company

Goodyear is one of the world’s largest tire companies. It employs about 63,000 people and manufactures its products in 47 facilities in 21 countries around the world. Its two Innovation Centers in Akron, Ohio, and Colmar-Berg, Luxembourg, strive to develop state-of-the-art products and services that set the technology and performance standard for the industry. For more information about Goodyear and its products, go to www.goodyear.com/corporate.

You can also follow us on Twitter @Goodyearpress.

Partnership with XL Ltd

Partnership with XL Ltd

Partnership with XL Ltd for the month of August!

Jon: “Together we are chasing podiums all month in the @elms_official 4hours of Spa, the 4hours of Le Castellet Part 2, and, the @fiawec_official 6hours of Spa…Extremely professional vehicle leasing for anyone, and true petrol heads! Give them a follow!”

Website: www.xlltd.com / @xllimited Responsive Vehicle Leasing…

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2020 Calendar
  • 4 Hours of Le Castellet - July 19 > 6th
  • 4 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps - August 9 > 12th
  • 4 Hours of Barcelona - August 29 > DNF
  • 4 Hours of Monza - October 11 > 9th
  • 4 Hours of Portimao - November 1

About The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company

Goodyear is one of the world’s largest tire companies. It employs about 63,000 people and manufactures its products in 47 facilities in 21 countries around the world. Its two Innovation Centers in Akron, Ohio, and Colmar-Berg, Luxembourg, strive to develop state-of-the-art products and services that set the technology and performance standard for the industry. For more information about Goodyear and its products, go to www.goodyear.com/corporate.

You can also follow us on Twitter @Goodyearpress.