20 August 2001
Wins for Harvey/Wilson and Franchitti/Burt.
Tim Harvey and Rob Wilson mastered appalling conditions at Knockhill yesterday afternoon (Sunday) to win a rain-hit Privilege Insurance British GT Championship race.
In second place overall, and having led the first half of the race, was the GTO class winning Porsche 911GT3RS of Kelvin Burt/Marino Franchitti.
Four-tenths of a second split the top three cars after qualifying for the Privilege Insurance British GT Championship at Knockhill on Saturday (18 August). At the end of the second session, the Lister Storm of Mike Jordan/David Warnock was fractionally ahead of the Chrysler Viper of Tim Harvey/Rob Wilson.
''That's a lot better than we thought it would be,'' said Jordan after taking the fight to the Viper. ''We've got a good set-up, but we're having to be a bit more circumspect than in a touring car,'' said Harvey. Initially, the Viper set the provisional pole time in the first session, but the time was disallowed due to a technical infringement, and so Harvey and Wilson had to qualify in the second session, with Harvey just unable to match the times from the earlier session.
Having been rebuilt after a major fire in testing on Friday, the TVR Cerbera was third fastest in the hands of Bobby Verdon-Roe and Michael Caine, while fourth in GT and fourth overall went to the new Stealth B6 of Terry Pudwell/Mark Pashley.
In GTO category, the Porsche of Marino Franchitti/Kelvin Burt set the pace in fourth slot overall. ''If it rains tomorrow (Sunday), there's every chance of a GTO car winning outright,'' reckoned Franchitti after setting the GTO pace.
Matt Turner/Ed Horner were second for Parr Motorsport, while Martin Short/Rob Barff saved their major challenge for the second session. However, track conditions in the afternoon session were generally slower and so their TVR Tuscan R stayed third in the GTO times from the other Tuscan of Richard Stanton/Steve Hyde.
The Chrysler Viper of Stephen Day/Curtis Hayles was fifth in GTO from the Porsche 911GT3RS of Mark Sumpter/Shaun Balfe.
Race: 43 laps:
With the Knockhill circuit beset by heavy rain for much of the day, the conditions were some of the worst that the championship has experienced. Just before the race, the rain increased and so race officials elected to start the race behind the safety car to allow some of the standing water to be shifted from the track.
After six laps behind the safety car, the race started for real and a brave move by Wilson took the Viper into the lead around the outside of the David Warnock/Mike Jordan Lister Storm into the first corner.
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