Rapid Ginetta GT5 racer Ollie Chadwick has been a surprise addition to the British GT Championship field as he is confirmed as a late addition to the GPRM Toyota GT86 alongside Stefan Hodgetts.
The car was meant to have former BRDC F4 and sportscar racer James Fletcher behind the wheel, but an issue with the 22-year-old’s licence has meant he will be sitting out the first round of the season.
For Chadwick, the call up was a late one – speaking to The Checkered Flag, Chadwick said: “I had a phone call from Chris Hodgetts at 11:30am yesterday and said he [Fletcher] may be out of the car and can’t do the race. They were looking for someone else to go in the car and Chris offered me the opportunity.”
Just in time to sign-on with SRO, Chadwick got out in the last 20 minutes of Free Practice Two for a few laps to adjust to a car quite a bit different to the car he has been racing in the Protyre Motorsport Ginetta GT5 Challenge the rest of this weekend. However, Chadwick said he is adapting well: “I’ve tested other stuff before so that has helped adjust to the GT86. The pace of the car didn’t take long to adjust to, it was the weight that I’m adjusting to – as well as utilising the turbo power the car has when it’s accelerating.”
Even though Chadwick has been quickly adjusting to the car, mechanical issues will always hamstring progress and an oil pressure issue going into qualifying relegated the car to 13th position on the GT4 grid.
Chadwick said: “We had an oil pressure issue in qualifying which affected the power steering as well, so I didn’t get a proper lap in during the session. It’s a big shame because when it goes it is a really good bit of kit. However, there is also a lot of ballast in the car which makes it harder to race than it should be.”
The British GT race today takes place at 1:30pm where Ollie will join sister Jamie – who is racing in the Generation AMR SuperRacing Aston Martin Vantage – in what is thought to be the first brother and sister combo competing against other. Ollie’s thoughts on that?: “It’s going to be interesting.”