2013 British GT Marque-By-Marque Preview: Bentley


Two of the new-for-2014 Continental GT3 will be on the Oulton Park grid (Credit: British GT media)

The creation of the Bentley Continental GT3 is testament to the strength of the health of GT racing, not just in the UK, but in Europe as well. A pair of the big Bentley’s will be present on the British GT grid, and both could be legitimate contenders for race wins.

Generation Bentley Racing
#2 – Steve Tandy/James Appleby

James Appleby makes the move into GT3, and not before time after serving an apprenticeship in the Aston Martin GT4 Challenge with the same family run team that lies behind the GBR banner for this season. He, obviously, remains an unknown in GT3 machinery – as does the machinery itself, though last weekend’s Blancpain Endurance Series event at Monza gave some clue as to the Continental’s potential.

However, though that is true the presence of Steve Tandy at the team is something of a steadying hand. With different co-drivers he entered the final races of both 2012 and 2013 in title contention in a series where the skill of a ‘Am’ is as, if not more, important than the pace of the Pro over the course of the season. If the Bentley is a competitive prospect and Applebys – father off track and son on track – live up to expectations there is no reason why Tandy should not be fighting for a title once more.

M-Sport
#17 – Humaid Al Masaood/Steven Kane

The team responsible for building and running the works Bentley’s appears on the British GT grid on a customer basis, though with works driver Steven Kane alongside Humaid Al Masaood. The pairing have a long history together, that has taken them though the Euro SpeedSeries and the American Le Mans Series before landing in GT racing.

Al Masaood is no mean driver himself, but it is almost undeniably Kane who will be the best Bentley driver on the grid, and should find a seat waiting for him at the top table of British GT.