Reigning British GT4 class champion Jody Fannin and Mark Cole will each drive a Nissan GT-R Nismo GT3 at this weekend’s Avon Tyres British GT Championship opener at Oulton Park.
Though both men are still working towards a budget to complete a full season of racing the pair will be run by JRM Racing for the weekend each in a 2013-spec car.
“The Nissan GT-R Nismo GT3 is getting a justified reputation as a very strong contender in GT racing,” said team principal James Rumsey. “We’ve worked hard with Nissan and Nismo to pull through developments over the winter and we have a good balance between performance, driveability and reliability. Jody and Mark saw this potential for British GT and we look forward to working with them in Oulton.”
“The Nissan GT-R Nismo GT3 looks fantastic and I can’t wait to get behind the wheel!” added Fannin, who won the GT4 title last year in dominant fashion with Team WFR. “I’m really looking forward to getting to grips with it at Oulton Park in race trim. Importantly we’ve got the test at Snetterton, which will be a chance to get to know the team and the car, and give us the best possibility of doing well in the race.”
The weekend will be Cole’s return to car racing who raced in single make championships including the Renault Spyder Cup UK, SEAT Cupra Cup GB. He also made a handful of British GT starts before stepping away from racing in 2007. More recently he raced on two wheels in 2011, but always aimed to return to car racing.
“It’s been some time since I even sat in a race car let alone drove competitively!” said the 47-year-old. “However I’ve never lost the hunger to get back behind the wheel, and the JRM Racing Nissan GT-R Nismo GT3 is a good opportunity for me. I’ll get the full experience at the test at Snetterton, which will be the very first time I will drive the car and provide an opportunity for me to literally get up to speed ahead of the race, but from what I’ve seen, it looks like it will be a very easy car to get to grips with. I’m hopeful about the prospect of doing a full championship and want to use this first race as a platform to show what we can do.”
The pair will be the only Nissans on the grid, after the decision to heavily penalise the latest batch of Nissan GT Academy winners led to RJN Motorsport exiting the championship.
Meanwhile Fannin’s GT4 co-champion Warren Hughes is set to begin a full season in the GT3 class with M-Sport Racing in an Audi R8 LMS ultra.
Nearly 30 GT3 cars are expected to contest the two 60-minute races on Easter Monday to start the 2013 season. With JRM’s announcement a ninth brand is added to the premier class.