Balfe all set for British GT Championship in Lamborghini Huracan

Lincolnshire racer Shaun Balfe will be back in the British GT Championship this season after finishing fourth overall last time out, sharing a Team Barwell Lamborghini Huracan GT3 with Sandy Mitchell.
Shaun Balfe gets the season under way on Easter Monday.Shaun Balfe gets the season under way on Easter Monday.
Shaun Balfe gets the season under way on Easter Monday.

It will be his 13th time in the Championship, having debuted back in 1999 with his Marcos Mantis.

For 2024 though there is a change of team, car and co-driver. He will be sharing with the reigning Porsche Carrera Cup Champion Adam Smalley, who has also won titles in the Ginetta GT4 Super Cup, Ginetta Junior Championship and Winter Series, as well as a number of Karting titles.

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Having joined Garage 59, they will be in the latest McLaren GT3, the 720S Evo, which Smalley will also race in the GT World Challenge Europe.

“I did a few laps in the car at a wet Silverstone, but my first real run in the car was at the Donington Park media day. I have still got a lot to learn, getting used to the new car on a busy track in wet conditions. So it’s in at the deep end again,” he said after the Donington test.

Balfe had previously raced a McLaren 720S under his family team banner in 2020 and previously the 650S, tasting success in the European GT Open Championship too.

“It’s hard to compare the new car to the old one, until I have driven it more anger. Adam has had a lot more seat time in the car and tested abroad. I hadn’t met him until the Silverstone test, but I am happy with the progress we have made so far,” he added.

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The opening round is at Oulton Park on Easter Monday, with a 36 car grid expected. Donington Park, Silverstone, Spa Francorchamps and Snetterton follow, before a second trip to Donington precedes the Brands Hatch finale at the end of September.

But Shaun won’t be the only Balfe on track this season, as teenage son Thomas in contesting the Ginetta GT Academy Championship, which is part of the British GT support programme.

Balfe Junior made his racing debut last season in the C1 Challenge, racing alongside his father and also contested the last few rounds of the Ginetta Academy.

“The Ginetta Media day Oulton Park was my first time in the new car. I am looking for decent results, but not setting a real target. I would like to progress in motorsport, but will see how things go at Easter,” said Thomas.

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