British GT moves to GT3 in the British GT Championship

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Credit: Nick Smith/ has announced they will be moving to the premier class of the British GT Championship with the acquisition of two BMW Z4 GT3s.

The team, which ran a Porsche 911 GT4 for Team Principal Shaun Hollamby, Graham Coomes and Jake Hill in 2015, will take over the running of the BMWs campaigned by Triple Eight for a number of seasons in British GT with car-owner Lee Mowle and long-time teammate Joe Osborne being confirmed as the first driver pairing.

Having finished third in last year’s championship, the pair – who are entering the fourth year of a very successful partnership – are confident their move to will allow them to go even better.

Osborne said: “Whilst we are moving to a new team for 2016, it is great to have the continuity of staying alongside Lee for a fourth year. We have shown what we are capable of as a pairing, and had it not been for a fuel pump issue at Spa, we could have ended up winning the championship last year. That has to be the target for us for the new season.
“We’ve obviously been able to learn a lot about the BMW during our time with Triple Eight, and while we can take that knowledge to, it’s also going to be interesting to see what emerges from looking at things from a different perspective. Shaun and the team have shown their knowledge and passion to succeed in everything they have done so far, and they are going to have ideas about what we can do with the car to make sure we are running at the sharp end of the grid.”

It isn’t just Mowle and Osborne moving to, with engineer Keith Cheetham also making the move to the West Thurrock-based team and Mowle is looking forward to the new challenge. He said: “I’ve known Shaun for a few years now through the BTCC and when we were looking for someone who we knew would do a solid job preparing the cars, his team fit the bill. is run as a tight ship and Shaun has a passion to succeed that I think will work well with the engineering experience that we are bringing with us.
“Keith Cheetham will continue to be involved having engineered the cars last year and we also have a wealth of data to work with that should put us in a good position, particularly when it comes to the new Pirelli tyres having run the BMW on them in the Blancpain Series last year. During 2015, Keith’s input allowed us to take steps forward with the car and we know there is still more to come, so getting a fresh set of eyes looking at things again with Shaun and his team can only benefit us.”

For Team Principal Shaun Hollamby, the move to GT3 was a sign of the team’s commitment to a championship they want to be in long term. He commented: “Having experienced the British GT Championship for the first time last year, it was clear that it is a series that we want to be part of for the long term. With that in mind, we are delighted to have agreed a deal with Lee to not only make the move up to the top GT3 class for 2016, but also to expand to a two-car team.
“The BMW has proven itself to be a strong package in recent years and in Lee and Joe, we have an established pairing in place who have shown they are more than capable of challenging for the title. Discussions with other drivers are ongoing and we are confident of having a second strong line-up in place ready for the start of the new season.
“Clearly this is a exciting development for us as a team for 2016 and we can’t wait to hit the track and get our pre-season preparations underway in earnest.”

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