British GT: Snetterton Preview
GT3 driver Ron Johnson is hopeful Speedworks Motorsport’s fortunes will change when the Avon Tyres British GT Championship campaign resumes this weekend. The Cheshire outfit’s driver duo reached the summer break without scoring a point behind the wheel of its Corvette Z06R. “That’s pretty poor,” said Ron. “It’s something we want to change.” Johnson, in tandem with Piers Johnson, has shown improved form in each of the four rounds to date.
Indeed, they were on course for a season-best finish at Brands Hatch last time out only for a prop shaft failure to end early their involvement with Piers placed 12th on track. “Personally, I had a great race,” added Ron, 54. “I took it really easy for the first few laps when the circuit was damp after a pre-race downpour. Most of the cars passed me, while a few more spun off. “Once I had the measure of a drying track, I got faster and re passed and set off in pursuit of the field.” The London-based driver climbed to fourth position by the time he handed over the Oilfield Production Consultants-backed machine to Piers. A delayed pit stop left the latter with work to do, but he recovered to the fringe of the top 10 before a forced retirement.
“It’s frustrating that the car broke again,” added Ron. “The most important thing now is to finish some races, hopefully scoring some points along the way.” The series heads this weekend to Snetterton, in Norfolk, where he took part in day-long test in May. He believes it was time well spent. “I got valuable track time to try different settings on the car,” added Ron. “My best lap time – at the end of the session on old tyres, was faster than my previous fastest last season. It was a good day.” The duo takes part in two, one-hour sprint races on Sunday.
A pair of free practice sessions, both 60-minutes long, precedes qualifying the day before. In the battle for GT3 championship honours, nine points separate the top five drivers. David Ashburn tops the standings on his own having shared his Trackspeed Porsche with more than one partner during the course of the campaign. Ferrari stalwarts Duncan Cameron and Matt Griffin are next best in their MTECH-prepared Ferrari 458 Italia while RJN Motorsport tandem Alex Buncombe and Jann Mardenborough occupy third place in their Nissan GTR.