With no success penalty ballast on the #96 Aston Martin Vantage, Optimum Motorsport head to the British GT Championship season finale at Donington Park seeking its second GT3 victory and is in with a mathematical chance of repeating last’s years success in claiming the overall drivers’ championship.
The season has been an impressive one for the team and drivers alike with Ollie Wilkinson and Bradley Ellis, having already wrapped up the Silver Cup title at Brands Hatch. While the overall drivers’ championship is an outside bet with a 33.5 points deficit following the unfortunate tyre issues last time out, but the pairing will certainly be going all out for win.
With persistent strides in performance, the team’s two GT4 entries have made great gains in recent events. However, the #35 of Connor O’Brien and Jack Butel hasn’t had great luck so far this season but for the former, confidence will be high following his superb second position last Sunday in GT Cup Open Europe at Silverstone.
Similarly, the #75 of Patrik Matthiessen and Mike Robinson has had a run of good form, running in the top four at Brands Hatch before a gearbox issue dropped them back in the field. With the recent gains though, a podium this weekend is a realistic option.
The series’ second visit to Donington Park features a familiar schedule with Saturday 14 September given over to practice and qualifying, while Sunday’s two-hour race gets underway at 13.15.
Shaun Goff, Team Principal
“We’re still in with a mathematical chance of the championship heading to Donington, which is fantastic, and with no success penalties to carry into the race, anything can happen. Another win would be a just reward for all of the hard work from both the team and drivers. So, we’re delighted to be going into the final round for the second successive year with a chance of the GT3 Championship. In GT4, I really believe we have made a good gain in terms of setup for our second visit to Donington, so the aim is to finish off the season well with all three cars.”
Ollie Wilkinson, #96
“In terms of the overall championship, it’s long shot, but what we have done this year with Optimum Motorsport is incredible. To be in the hunt as a Silver-Silver pairing is rare – look back over the last five years – and our results are outstanding. The team have proven again their pedigree in the British GT Championship and to finish perhaps with another win and a top three in the championship is more than we could have ever expected. I can’t wait for Donington.”
Bradley Ellis, #96
“Mathematically the drivers’ title it’s possible, so we’ll go for that, but we definitely will not be disappointed with a top three in the championship. As a Silver-Silver pairing and with the additional ballast we carry, to finish that high up would be a great achievement. We’ll go for the win and then see what everyone else does as it’s down to them to lose it, not really up to us to win it.”
Patrik Matthiesen, #75
“I know Donington pretty well, but ahead of the race I’ll spend some time in the simulator to give myself a refresh. I’m looking forward to racing there again and I think we can have a good run and maybe get that podium!”
Connor O’Brien, #35
“We had a really good run in qualifying at Donington earlier in the season, so hopefully we can do the same again. The aim as ever is to maximise the result in this final round and send it out on a high!”
Jack Butel, #35
“We showed very good pace at Donington the first time there and we were unfortunate with the contact we had. We’ll go back and repeat what we did before and we should be right up there. We’ll take the negatives and put them into positives and go stronger at Donington.”