British GT

Team Abba and Toyota Gazoo Racing UK secure maiden poles in GT3 and GT4

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Team Abba Racing, Mercedes AMG, GT3, Silver/Am, #8, Richard Neary, Sam Neary, Donington Park Derbyshire United Kingdom © Craig Robertson

Richard and Sam Neary capitalized on a chaotic qualifying session to secure first place ahead of the final race of the season. It was a challenging wet/dry session in which several cars missed the dry running at the very beginning of the session before the rain hit. Tom Edgar and Jordan Collard took pole position in GT4, their first of the season.

With the qualifying session broken down into four 10-minute stints, it’s the combined times of the two drivers in each class which secure the lap time and just minutes into the first 10-minute stint, a brief rainstorm brought out a red flag with the Paddock Motorsport McLaren ending up in the gravel at turn one. At the Red flag, only half the field had managed to set a lap time. All four GT3 championship contenders were among those to have not set a time and they will all start outside of the top seven.

Its put’s Team Abba in a prime position to bounce back after technical issues at Brands Hatch took them out of the race with just a lap to run. Orange Racing powered by JMH will line up in P2 alongside Team Abba.

In GT4, it was a two-way battle between the Toyota Gazoo Racing UK GR Supra and the Steller Motorsport Audi R8 LMS. Tom Edgar and Jordan Collard set a combined time of 3:12.529, Sennan Fielding and Richard Williams were just 0.017s behind on combined times.


The fastest laps came in the final moments, including times for Sam Neary and Michael O’Brien who managed to make the best of the damp but drying conditions. It’s worth noting that this is Team Abba’s first-ever British GT pole position.

Richard Neary was one of the lucky ones who managed to get a dry run in Q1, setting the second-fastest lap of the session. Sam secured the top spot in a dryer Q2, posting a time of 1:47.059 on his last run, putting him one second up on Michael O’Brien. GT3 debutant Darren Leung set the fastest lap of the session, 0.2 seconds up on Neary with a time of 1:29.803. Fox Motorsport was running third before the Red Flag, Nick Halstead 0.336 off first place.

The Orange Racing powered by JMH Mclaren began Q2 0.929s off the pace, but with dryer conditions in Q2, the usual suspects returned to the front and with Michael O’Brien going second fastest, there was enough of a gap to overcome the 0.929s deficit.

Jamie Stanley and Nick Halstead claimed third position alongside the Century Motorsport BMW M4 GT3 of Alexander Sims and Darren Leung. The Greystone GT Mclaren of Stewart Proctor and Warren Hughes will start fifth. The Paddock Motorsport McLaren entered Q2 and sat in fourth place after the opening lap of Q1, however, after beaching in the gravel at turn 1 once the rain hit, the car was returned to the garage and checked over by the team. As a result, they failed to set a time in Q2 and so will take a 10-place penalty.

This means the Enduro Motorsport McLaren starts eighth due to Morgan Tillbrook failing to set a dry lap. Barwell Motorsport took the gamble and switched Sandy Mitchell to slicks early on, but this failed to have the impact the team were looking for. Mitchell and Adam Balon will line up ninth, ahead of the Ram Racing Mercedes of Ian Loggie and Jules Gounon.


Toyota Gazoo Racing UK, Toyota GR Supra, GT4, Silver, #48, Tom Edgar, Jordan Collard, Donington Park Derbyshire United Kingdom © Craig Robertson

Tom Edgar and Jordan Collard took their first pole position in a chaotic qualifying at Donington Park, the Toyota Gazoo Racing UK GR Supra took the teams maiden pole by 0.017s over combined times. Century Motorsport led the way early on but were quickly surpassed by both the Toyota GR Supra and the Steller Motorsport Audi of Richard Williams and Senna Fielding. The track continued to dry throughout the session, so lap times continued to tumble.  Five cars held the lead at one point or another during the first 10 minutes, Jamie Orton set the pace early on in the Team Parker Racing Porsche 718 Cayman before trading times with the #9 Century Motorsport BMW of Tom Rawlings. It all came down to the final two laps though, Richard Williams initially went half a second faster with just seconds left on the clock, but Edgar was pushing hard and bested the Audi driver by just 0.238s. Rawling’s had to settle for third, 0.767 off the lead.

The final session was almost completely dry, Jordan Collard took the wheel of the GR Supra and set the fastest lap straight out the block. Fielding bounced back jumping ahead by a couple of tenths, eventually setting the fastest lap of the session with a 1:34.515, Collard’s lap time though was enough to secure combined pole by 0.017s. Chris Salkeld held on to third, with Jamie Day and Josh Miller taking fourth in the R Racing Aston Martin. Jack Brown and Will Burns will start fifth in the #90 Century Motorsport BMW.

Matt Topham and Darren Turner struggled throughout qualifying and had to settle for 12th overall. Topham started the first stint on wets and was 9 seconds off the pace leaving Turner an insurmountable task.

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I've been working as a motorsports photographer for over 10 years now and have covered some of the biggest races in the world, Le Mans 24 Hour, Spa 24 Hour, Daytona 24 Hour and Indy Car events.
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