Qualifying for the Donington Park 3-hour British GT race might be short but it throws up plenty of interesting information about the performance of the various teams. Below we’ll have a look at a small piece of the data available to hopefully add a little extra detail to the qualifying results.


Q1 of the GT3 session saw the amateur drivers go out first and it was Rob Collard in the #63 Barwell Motorsport Lamborghini who posted the fastest outright lap putting in a ​1:26.051 lap on his fourth attempt out of six laps. This was ahead of his teammate across the garage, Alex Martin in the #78 Barwell Lamborghini who also put his best lap in on his fourth run out of six but 0.195 seconds slower than Collard.

P3 went to the #77 Garage 59 McLaren 720s of Morgan Tillbrook who waited until the last of his seven laps to post his best time of 1:26.443, just 0.392 seconds behind Collard.

Looking at the best sector times, it was a Barwell Motorsport lockout with the #63 and #78 cars trading the fastest sector times. Collard driving the #63 was fastest in S1 and S3 with Martin taking the second fastest times in those sectors but taking the fastest time in S2.

Comparing the driver’s ideal lap to their best lap we see Rob Collard at the top with an ideal lap of 1:25.919, this being the combined time of his three best sectors, with his best overall lap of 1:26.051 a difference of just 0.132.

Alex Martin followed behind with an ideal lap of 1:25.976 and his best lap being 0.270 seconds slower.

Although only posting the third best ideal and best laps, Morgan Tillbrook was the closest to his ideal time of 1:26.429 seconds and posting a fastest lap just 0.014 seconds slower. This is certainly an impressive achievement however his garage teammate, Shaun Balfe in the #59 Garage 59 McLaren 720s posted the fourth fastest ideal time and perfectly matched that time and he wasn’t the only one to match his ideal time. Posting the 20th ideal time was the #10 Blackthorn Aston Martin of Matt Topham who had a time of 1: 27.637 and perfectly matched it.

In Q2 when the professional drivers were let loose, we see things are much tighter at the top of the field. The fastest lap went to the #27 Optimum Motorsport McLaren 720s of Tom Gamble with a time of 1:24.973 which he completed on his fourth lap of seven. Sandy Mitchell took second place just 0.011 seconds behind in the #78 Barwell Motorsport Lamborghini, producing his best lap on his fifth attempt out of seven laps.

Raffeale Marciello in the #15 RAM Racing Mercedes was third fastest completing his best lap early in the session with a 1:25.029 lap on his second attempt out of six. The time was just 0.056 seconds behind Gamble and 0.045 behind Mitchell. His lap speed was just 0.05 mph slower than the top two who matched each other with a speed of 105.36mph.

Going to the GT3 Q2 sector times it was Marciello who took the fastest S1 and S3 times in Q2 but was let down by only completing a 7th fastest time in S2 which meant he only posted the third fastest time of the session, still just 0.061 second off it’s ideal lap of 1:24.968.

The #78 of Sandy Mitchell posted the best S2 time and with a second best time in S1 and fourth best in S3, this was enough to give him the outright best lap with a time of 1:24.984 just 0.077 off his ideal time. Tom Gamble posted the second best ideal time with his pole winning best time being just 0.032 seconds slower.

In GT4 Stewart Middleton in the #56 DTO Motorsport Ginetta did the fastest lap in the first qualifying session posting a time of 1:33.495 on his final lap of six attempts. Interestingly, Middleton’s fastest lap didn’t include any fastest sectors. His fourth lap saw him get the fastest times in sector 1 and 2 whilst his best sector 3 time was on his second lap.

In second place was the #90 Optimum Motorsport McLaren Artura of Jack Brown who was 0.179 seconds slower than Middleton and put in his best lap on his second run of 5 laps. He also set the second best ideal lap setting a best lap that was 0.072 seconds slower which was still better than Middleton who set the fastest ideal lap but was 0.177 slower with his best lap.

In the second qualifying session it was Seb Morris in the #31 Team Parker Racing Mercedes who topped the times with a lap of 1:33.372, a time he clocked on his second lap of 4. He also set the best ideal lap time of 1:33.277 which he was just 0.095 shy of matching with his best lap.

Second place went to Jordan Albert in the #79 Steller Motorsport Audi R8. He set the 8th best times in sector 1 and 2 before putting in the second best time in sector 3. This gave him the third best ideal time with his best lap being just 0.022 slower.

The #7 Forsetti Motorsport Aston Martin was the closest to their ideal time, posting a best lap of 1:33.699 just 0.003 off their ideal time. 


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