Andrew Kirkaldy and Nathan Kinch sealed their second race win of the weekend with victory in round six of the British GT Championship at Snetterton in Norfolk this afternoon. Jonathan Rowland and Adam Sharpe took a thrilling win in the Dailysportscar.com Cup Class.
Kirkaldy got a good start to lead the opening lap and was helped as main rival Tim Sugden was battling for second place with Kirkaldy's team-mate Tim Mullen. With Sugden pre-occupied, the Scuderia Ecosse Ferrari was able to pull out a lead at the front.
The battle for second and third place became more heated when Nigel Greensall joined the fight in the RSR TVR T400R. The extra success ballast on board Sugden's Porsche was showing as he struggled to get away from Mullen and Greensall to stay in touch with Kirkaldy.
As the leader dived into the pits to hand over to Kinch he had a lead of just over 25 seconds, the extra time that the Ferrari is handed for the driver handicap. A swift changeover by the team allowed Kinch to leave the pit-lane just six seconds clear of Sugden's team-mate Jonathan Cocker.
Cocker pushed hard for a handful of laps and looked for a way past Kinch. However, the Ferrari had taken on fresh tyres during its stop and the extra weight and punishing pace was causing Cocker to struggle with the brakes and for grip.
A jubilant Kinch was pleased to have narrowed the gap to their championship rivals.
"The car had understeer from about midway through my stint as I had to run wide and picked up some of the marbles and dirt from the side of the circuit," he said. "But I think Cocker was struggling towards the end. It's feels great to have won both races, it's just what we needed for the championship," he added.
Godfrey Jones took third place but was pressured toward the end of the race by team-mate Mike Jordan, who was driving well without fifth gear. Jones' had problems of his own in the closing laps as he began to feel his engine begin to cease up.
Steve Hyde and Piers Johnson picked up fifth place in the Eclipse Motorsport TVR while the second Scuderia Ecosse Ferrari could only manage sixth by the end of the hour-long race.
The Dailysportscar.com Cup Class went down to the wire as Jonathan Rowland overcame a spin by team-mate Adam Sharpe to pass Pete Chambers for the lead with just two laps left to go. The Morgan of Keith Ahlers and Aaron Scott battled with the DRM Ferrari of Adam Wilcox and Ni Amorim early in the race, but contact between the two put them out of contention for the victory. Wilcox and Amorim managed to gain third place to make up for it.
"We were side-by-side for three laps around the back of the circuit before I finally managed to make it stick," said Rowland. "It was a good clean race but it was such hard work," he added.