British GT

Kell and Collard to run third Team Rocket RJN GT4 McLaren

2 Mins read

Team Rocket RJN will run a third McLaren 570S GT4 in this season’s Intelligent Money British GT Championship.

It will be driven by 2020 GT4 class runner-up Jordan Collard, who moves from HHC Motorsport to run the same machinery, and James Kell, who leaves Speedworks Motorsport.

Speedworks have announced an all-new driver line-up to work alongside its Young Driver Programme, with Kell’s 2020 team-mate Sam Smelt running for TOYOTA GAZOO Racing UK in the Kwik Fit MSA British Touring Car Championship this year. The BTCC team will be jointly-run by Speedworks.

Collard, son of 2020 British GT Drivers’ Champion Rob Collard, is familiar with the McLaren, having helped HHC to second in the GT4 Teams Championship, alongside Dane Patrick Matthiesen.

Kell and Smelt showed promising pace at times for Speedworks, often challenging for podiums, but struggled to find consistency in the Toyota GR Supra GT4, placing them bottom of the 2020 Teams’ standings.

Sam Smelt and James Kell's #23 Speedworks GR Supra GT4 at Oulton Park last season.
James Kell ran the #23 Speedworks Motorsport Toyota GR Supra GT4 in British GT last season.
Credit: TOYOTA GAZOO Racing UK

Team Rocket RJN’s other two GT4 entries for this season will be piloted by McLaren Junior Programme drivers, Katie Milner, Alain Valente, Michael Benyahia and Harry Hayek.

The team ran World’s Fastest Gamer James Baldwin and Michael O’Brien to fourth in the GT3 Teams and Drivers’ standings last year, having been in the title race going into the season-ending Silverstone 500. This year will be their first in GT4, switching from the McLaren 720S GT3 to the 570S GT4.

“I’m very happy to return with McLaren and to be competing in the Intelligent Money British GT Championship with Team Rocket RJN,” Collard said.

“The team were very strong last year with their GT3 project and we will be pushing hard for that top step from the opening weekend at Brands Hatch.”

Kell added, “It was a boyhood dream of mine to drive and be involved with McLaren, and Jenson [Button] was my idol growing up.

“To now be joining Team Rocket RJN and having Jenson as one of the team owners is fantastic.

I’m really looking forward to working with such an experienced team of professionals and looking forward to an amazing season and beyond.”

Team principal Bob Neville added: “We are really pleased to expand our British GT programme further this year with another car.

“A huge welcome to Jordan and James to our team and I have no doubt we have a great line-up to be able to fight hard for this championship.

“Jordan is of course very familiar with the McLaren 570S GT4 and although James is yet to drive the car in anger, I have no doubt he will soon settle in and work well with all our team.”

The Intelligent Money British GT Championship is set to get underway at Brands Hatch on 22/23 May, with the BRDC British Formula 3 Championship the headline supporting act for much of the season.

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Stickler for track limits, covering the GB3 Championship and the FIA Formula 3 Championship. Twitter: @MCallanderMedia
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