Tolman Motorsport celebrate a successful start to their 2018 British GT Championship campaign, taking podium results in the GT4 class at Oulton Park.
Charlie Fagg and Michael O’ Brien took home a silver class win, and finished second in the GT4-class in their Mclaren 570S GT4, while teammates Jordan Albert and Lewis Proctor took a Silver class podium finish. Meanwhile, the Pro-Am pairing of David Pattison and Joe Osborne in the sister McLaren 570S claimed good points on their return to the series around a soggy Oulton Park.
In what has been a long winter for Tolman Motorsport, team manager Christopher Tolman said, “It’s been an incredibly tough journey and hard work going from one car to three, and being given the opportunity to run the cars for the McLaren Automotive Driver Development Programme is fantastic.”
The team had a typically British start to the season, with testing and qualifying being completed in mixed weather conditions. But this was just as well, with race-day plagued by wet weather conditions.
For this weekend at Oulton Park, as this weekend adopted a two by one-hour format, saw the fastest times from the Am-drivers set the grid for race one (O’ Brien, Pattison and Proctor), while the fastest times from the Pro drivers determined the grid for race two (Fagg, Osborne, Albert).
It was a strong qualifying session for the team, with O’ Brien looking as assured as ever in his first GT qualifying session. The number #4 McLaren started the first race from second, and the second race from third in their first session of the season.
It was still a decent outcome for the number #5 McLaren 570S with Proctor managing a lap good enough for sixth in what he described as his ‘best lap I’ve ever done around Oulton park in the dry’, while Albert was disappointed with eighth in class for race two.
Pattison and Osborne however were not satisfied with their efforts, with Pattison placing the number #56 Mclaren seventh for race one, while Osborne was fifth quickest for race two.
With the first race taking place on a wet road, fielding a record 36 GT cars for the start of the 2018 season, the race got underway behind the safety car. But this only lasted a few laps before the British GT field were let loose on the Oulton Park International Circuit.
A great start by all three starting drivers saw them move up the field and hold their ground until they handed over to their team-mates at the half-way mark. After a great opening stint, Pattison was the first to hand over to Osborne who continued in the number #56 McLaren.
McLaren driver academy graduates all made impressive debuts for Tolman Motorsport, with Charlie Fagg crossing the line second in GT4, with the number #56 and number #5 McLarens’ of Osborne and Albert finishing fifth and sixth respectively.
Race two was started under the safety car, but with the conditions far worse than in race one, it was shortly red flagged, with a boat being a more suitable choice than a car to navigate around the track.
Hence, the race officials were left with no option except to abandon the race.
Full points were awarded and the race officially classified after four laps. The results after Oulton Park see Tolman Motorsport lead the teams championship heading to Rockingham Motor Speedway on the 28-29 April.