Struan Moore and Ricardo Sanchez have claimed the RJN Motorsport Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3’s first ever British GT pole position at Silverstone this afternoon.
TF Sport couldn’t manage its third GT3 pole, but Mark Farmer and Nicki Thiim were satisfied with a place on the front row ahead of Jetstream Motorsport’s Graham Davidson and Maxime Martin.
The last GT3 pole position for a Silver crew also came at Silverstone 12 months ago, but this time it was all about RJN, Nissan, Sanchez and Moore who each claimed their maiden poles thanks to their supremely consistent performances.
When asked if the Nissan pole was something of a surprise, Moore told us, “It’s certainly not a surprise pole, the championship is super competitive this year, and we’ve hooked it up, so the gap was significant, but Nicki Thiim had a big gap at Snetterton! It’s been fantastic to do it for everyone as its been a difficult start to the year in terms of overall pace. It’s an old model GTR, so it’s brilliant, I’m just happy for the guys. It’s half the job done, so now we’re focused on the race tomorrow.”
Moore then went on to explain why his Mexican co-driver is a good fit for the Nissan squad,“We raced together in Blancpain and there’s not a lot between Ricardo and Jordan (Witt), but Ricardo’s just got that bit more of experience at a higher level. It put us in good stead for the AM qualifying and the race. It is so nice to partner with him again, he did a brilliant job.”
Instead of challenging for pole, TF Sport driver Nicki Thiim only just held on to second after Jetstream’s Maxime Martin lapped 0.5s faster than his AMR stablemate. Just 0.010s separated the two Aston Martins on the combined timesheets, while Callum Macleod’s spirited effort helped the #7 Team Parker Bentley Continental GT3 jump from eighth to fourth.
Team ABBA Racing’s Mercedes-AMG GT3 also picked up a couple of places thanks to Adam Christodoulou who reduced his own British GT3 qualifying lap record at Silverstone to 1m59.095s. Ryan Ratcliffe finished sixth in the second Team Parker Bentley he shares with Rick Parfitt Jnr, Optimum Motorsport’s Jonny Adam and Flick Haigh were seventh, and Andy Howard and Darren Turner finished eighth in the Beechdean AMR V12 Vantage GT3.
Championship leaders Lee Mowle and Yelmer Buurman will start in 12th, the same position from where they won at Rockingham earlier this season.