Podium spot for Proctors as they begin British GT campaign

Balfe drivers begin well...

Balfe drivers were in British GT action.

Stewart and Lewis Proctor made a strong start to the British GT season in their Balfe Motorsport McLaren 750S GT3, with a second place finish in the Silver Am class at Brands Hatch.

In Saturday’s qualifying it was Stewart out first, netting third in class and 10th overall, before handing to son Lewis.

Despite being out among the Pro drivers, Lewis improved to only 0.648 secs off pole position, which gave him second in class and eighth best overall, for ninth on the grid for Sunday’s race.

It was Stewart in the car for the race start. He had settled in eighth initially, but the race had started behind the safety car due to rain.

From the green flag Stewart lost out to James Cottingham’s Mercedes, Nick Jones’ Porsche and Lucky Khera’s Lamborghini, demoting him to 12th, and under pressure from Shamus Jennings Porsche.

“I probably didn’t didn’t get up to pace quickly enough, when the tyres came up to temperature,” he admitted.

But after nine laps the safety car was back out for four laps, although Stewart had gained a place, he had also lost out to Jennings, who became his fellow duellist for most of his stint.

With Cottingham’s Mercedes a casualty on lap 24, out came the safety car for a third time, which ultimately led to Stewart losing places to Gus Burton’s Ginetta and Michael Brown’s Aston Martin, after he was forced on to the grass at Graham Hill Bend by a backmarker.

On the 37th lap he pitted handing to Lewis to complete the race.

He rejoined in 10 th and was soon closing in on Greg Caton in the Jennings Porsche.

It became close and closer and by lap 44 the gap was only 0.27 secs. Lewis was looking for his chance to challenge for ninth, but was in trouble after the two clashed at the super fast Hawthorns.

“He put me into the gravel, I managed to get out but it had affected our performance,” Lewis explained.

"He had lost four seconds to his rival, but soon began to close again as Caton became embroiled in a duel with Ross Wylie in the Khera Lamborghini.

Lewis was still in 10th , but when the Caton versus Wylie duel spilled over, he shot ahead of them both to claim eighth overall and second in the Silver Am Class, behind the fifth placed Richard and Sam Neary’s Mercedes.

After cautious start to the weekend in the GT4 Class, Ashley Marshall/Jack Brown’s Balfe Motorsport McLaren 570S only just missed out on the podium too, with a solid fourth in the Silver Class and seventh best GT4.

They had qualified ninth and it was Marshall that took the opening stint.

From the green flag he lost out to Katie Milner’s similar car, but reclaimed his place after 14 laps, then holding station until the next safety car intervention.

Progress was steady and he had climbed to sixth in the GT4’s when he pitted to Brown.

They were the last crew to make their stop and Brown settled into a comfortable pace, which finally brought them home seventh in the GT4’s, but fourth in the Silver Class.

The next round of the Championship is at Silverstone on June 25-26.