Teenage Courier Country racing sensation Sandy Mitchell is taking his talent to the continent in the quest for sportscar success in 2018.
The Angus 17-year-old will be behind the wheel of a 190mph Barwell Motorsport Lamborghini Huracan GT3 for the new Silver Cup ‘junior pro’ class of the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup – a championship fought out on circuits including Silverstone and Monza and featuring July’s blue riband Spa 24 Hours at the legendary Belgian track.
The V10 Lamborghini will sport the livery of the Black Bull Scotch whisky brand, continuing a partnership forged between the north east firm and the young racer, as well as reigniting a relationship with Barwell after highly-successful Ecurie Ecosse BMW Z4 GT3 programmes in 2014/15.
Mitchell is making the step up to the GT3 category following two polished seasons in a McLaren 570S GT4 in the British GT championship which reaped race wins, fastest laps and a reputation as one of the brightest young prospects on the grid.
British junior karting champion in 2014, the British Racing Drivers’ Club Rising Star has penned his name in the motorsport history books on a number of occasions since a 2015 season in single-seaters and the move into sportscar racing.
The former Dundee High School pupil, now undertaking a Motor Sports Association AASE sports science course at Loughborough College said: “I am extremely excited to make the step up to the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup in the Black Bull Huracan GT3.
“It will be a very competitive championship and I am looking forward to the challenge.
“I’m new to the Lamborghini Huracan but with the experience of Barwell Motorsport and my team mates, I will learn quickly.
“This is a fantastic opportunity and I’d like to thank Black Bull and all my sponsors for their continued support,” he added.
The Black Bull-backed Lamborghini will start its testing programme in Portimao, Portugal early next month, before moving on to the official March Blancpain pre-season test at Paul Ricard in France, then both Monza and Silverstone.
When the flag drops on the first round of Endurance Cup at Monza on April 22, the Angus racer will just have turned 18 and be one of the youngest drivers on the packed grid.
Mitchell will be partnered in the GT3 version of the Italian supercar by 20-year-old Croatian Martin Kodric – who claimed a trio of Blancpain Pro-Am team victories last season – and fellow Lamborghini Squadra Corse junior driver, 23-year-old Italian Michele Beretta, 2017’s Italian GT Championship victor.
Mitchell added: “As a trio, I have no doubt we will be very strong. I’m looking forward to my first test of the car with Martin and Michele, and it will be great to get detailed inside knowledge from the guys who have already won races in the Blancpain GT Series.”
Euan Shand, chairman of Duncan Taylor Scotch Whisky and Black Bull, said: “We’re delighted to be working again with Barwell Motorsport.
“As our company sells whisky in more than 50 countries, we’re looking forward to enhancing our global brand awareness that racing in the Blancpain GT Series will bring.
“We have been big supporters of GT racing for several years now and have sponsored teams with Sandy Mitchell at the wheel since he was 15.
“He is a hugely talented young driver and we’re delighted he is making his debut in GT3, along with the more experienced Michele Beretta and Martin Kodric.
“We wish the team great success and look forward to the season ahead.”