British GT champion Sandy Mitchell returns to the scene of his title-clinching race win this weekend fired up to repeat his Silverstone 500 victory.
The Forfar 21-year-old heads to the iconic Northamptonshire circuit determined to score his fist win in this year’s championship with team-mate Adam Balon in the No. 1 Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo, prepared by Barwell Motorsport.
“I’ve always loved racing at Silverstone, and obviously I have great memories of winning the corresponding Silverstone 500 last season — albeit it was run in November because of Covid — to seal the championship,” said Mitchell.
“We know the Barwell guys always deliver a fast and reliable Lamborghini, and we know the car suits the circuit, so we’ll be pushing hard to bag our first win of the year.”
Mitchell, a Lamborghini factory driver and member of the British Racing Drivers’ Club’s elite SuperStars programme, is also hoping Lady Luck shines more brightly on the duo’s car.
“In the opening round at Brands Hatch we had a really fast car,” he said.
“But in the race we dropped a lap after Adam was spun into the gravel after contact from a rival.
“These things happen of course, but we’ve put that result behind us.
“Now we’re fully focused on making an all-out assault to get our championship bid back on course.
“We had a very positive test at Silverstone earlier this month, and everyone in the team was pleased with the pace and times we set.”
Championship’s longest race
He said: “We have to replicate that first in qualifying, then in the three-hour race.
“It’s the longest race in the championship, which means strategy plays a big part in the outcome.
“We did something aggressive last year and it paid off.
“It’s all about anticipating and then reacting to incidents, and in the Barwell boys we have many, many years of experience in managing races.
“It’s the 10th running of the Silverstone 500 this year.
“We all know if we get the calls right and we manage to stay out of trouble, we have the pace to be fighting right at the sharp end of the race.
“Do that, and we’ll be in the mix for the win,” he said.
The young ace has also extended his sporting partnership with Dundee-headquartered legal and property firm Thorntons.
“Thorntons has been a supporter of my racing career since I entered Formula 4 in 2015.
“Their backing continued when I graduated into sportscars the following season, and I’m delighted now to have been able to extend that partnership into the defence this year of my British GT title.
“It has always been important to me to attract the support of major companies in Dundee and Angus, and Thorntons is certainly one of those.”