It was another successful weekend for the Fulbeck-based Balfe Motorsport team, with the father-and-son crew of Stewart and Lewis Proctor recording another British GT podium finish at the Silverstone 500 in their McLaren 720S GT3.
Stewart was first out in the car for official qualifying in ninth overall, before Lewis took over and was 10th in his session.
Their combined times netted them ninth on the grid, but more importantly they had the Silver Am Class pole position.
“The car was really good, a bit of undesteer but it’s improved a lot. I think it was dad’s best session in GT3 and I was quicker than some works drivers, so happy with that,” said Lewis.
It was Stewart in for the first stint, holding a solid 10th but under pressure from the RAM Racing Mercedes.
All was well until they began to catch backmarkers, and as Stewart made his way through, there was contact and he was on the grass.
Fortunately there was no damage, but two cars went by and he recovered in 11 th , before losing out to Michael Igoe’s Lamborghini a couple of laps later.
As the first round of pitstops commenced, Stewart had climbed to seventh before, handing to son Lewis, second in class.
By lap 50 he was battling in the top six, “it was good, but I think I only made one place actually on the track, the rest were through pitstop strategy.
"But in a race this long it’s more a case of survival.” Lewis added.
Pitting on lap 53 Stewart kept them in contention for a top five finish with a short 14 lap stint, but it was down to Lewis to bring the car to the finish.
“Then I got a drive through penalty, I had been told on the radio that the warning flag was out, but I seemed to get all my warnings in one go and it was too late,” said Lewis after pitting from seventh and rejoining 10th which he retained to the finish.
Tenth overall however was still second in class to the RAM Racing Mercedes of James Cottingham and Sam De Haan, which means the Proctor’s are current leaders of the Silver Am Class.
“It would be nice to win that class, we have the potential now, but that was a long race. The crew were great though and there were no mistakes at any of our pitstops,” Lewis concluded.
Jack Brown and Ashley Marshall were also out in their Balfe Motorsport McLaren 570S GT4, having qualified ninth best GT4 for fourth in the Silver Cup Class.
They were seventh in class after the first hour, but managed to gain one place during the second.
But in the final standings they were back to seventh, after sustaining costly suspension damage, which also leaves them seventh in the Championships positions too.
It’s not long before the action recommences, with Donington Park on July 10 the next port of call.