Chris Hart has said his return to the Intelligent Money British GT Championship is something he’s been looking forward to for quite a while, having last raced in the championship back in 2010.
The Mercedes racer, more familiar to regular followers of sportscar racing in Britain as a key member of the Makehappen Racing team in the GT Cup Championship, is making his GT3 debut this weekend alongside his Group GTH rival from last year – James Wallis.
Racing for Track Focused, the team is moving into GT3 itself for the Silverstone 500 having opened the season at Oulton Park in a Mercedes-AMG GT4 but electing to bring the Mercedes-AMG GT3 that Wallis races in GT Cup.
Hart explained that the move was something that had been discussed in the past: “I was talking to James’ dad, a little bit last year and then after Oulton Park. Oulton didn’t go as well as they probably hoped in the GT4 so he decided because they’re going so well in the GT3 that they were going to change. Sam can’t race with James in this, and they asked if I wanted to do it as the Bronze.”
While it’s Hart’s first race in a GT3 Mercedes, it’s not his first time testing one of the high-aero, high-powered GT machines, having previously tested a McLaren in the past, adding: “I actually did do a test with 2 Seas in their McLaren a few years ago and I’ve driven stuff with aero before and it’s a Merc, and I’m driving a Merc already so it’s not a dissimilar step up, just I suppose we haven’t had time to get the seat quite right for me, and I had a little test the other day but I’ve not had chance to do much running.”
While debuting in British GT – while it’s in such a renaissance – is never an easy prospect, this weekend’s blue-riband Silverstone 500 seems even tougher a proposition with 24 GT3 cars taking on the challenge of a three-hour race. Despite those daunting hurdles on the horizon, Hart is positive about it all.
“It’s going to be good! I had one run out in British GT in 2010 with Anthony Reid in a Chevron, it was a one-off and a bit of a baptism of fire! I had some great races against James last year, he’s a lovely kid as well and yeah just looking forward to it – hopefully we can surprise a few people!” Hart said.
“My background is from Fun Cup, so I’m used to anything up to 25 hours so for me, this is just a Fun Cup race on steroids!”
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