A strong Hungarian GT Open race weekend for victorious inception racing
The fifth and sixth rounds of International GT Open in Hungary proved to be positive for inception racing as they notched up its third Pro-Am class victory of the season as well as a fine runner up position to extend its championship advantage to 18 points with eight rounds remaining.
With Nick Moss recovering from a back injury sustained last time out at Spa-Francorchamps, the Optimum Motorsport run team fielded the #7 McLaren 720S GT3 for Brendan Iribe and Ollie Millroy; working through the Friday practice session ahead of the all-important first qualifying session on Saturday morning.
Once again Ollie took to the track to qualify, completing two stints to set the fifth fastest time, second in the Pro-Am class. The 70-minute race saw the British racer make a good start to shadow the #77 Porsche in what soon became a high-speed train battling for second through to fifth places.
Ollie ran a slightly longer stint than some of his rivals, with the aim to get an overcut on the #77. He pitted on lap 23, with Brendan heading out just ahead of the #77 driven by Ben Barker. The Lechner Racing car made best use of his warm tyres and was able to pass Brendan as he got up to full speed.
The American racer pressed on, taking the #47 Mercedes of Gianluca Giraudi to take the Pro-Am class lead, built a cushion, and ultimately took fourth position overall.
Sunday’s race was very much dictated by changeable weather conditions. Brendan qualified ninth but quickly dispatched two of his rivals at the start of the one-hour race. The race settled and with the pit window open on lap 14, pitted the McLaren and served the success penalty from the Saturday win.
Rain started to fall shortly afterwards, with Ollie working his way back up the order as others started to pit for wet Michelins. With the Safety Car deployed on lap 22, he opted to pit but at the very last moment, the team called off the stop, allowing Ollie to drive past the pit and back onto the race circuit.
This was the pivotal moment of the race as while rain shower had made for tricky conditions, the circuit was drying quickly and once back under green conditions, Ollie was able to pass the #77 of Andy Soucek and close rapidly on the race leader and ultimate winner Loris Spinelli. It was a fine drive, coupled with a great strategy call for the team to cap off another very successful GT Open race weekend.
"It was a great drive by Brendan on Saturday, awesome laps to take the flag and another GT Open win. A mega job by the whole team for giving us a solid race car. Then we were second overall and second in Pro-Am today, another great result. An awesome start and stint by Brendan kept us in the game, then an epic call by the team to leave me out on slicks in the rain with 20 minutes to go. Awesome teamwork once again."