Bitter Sweet Silverstone Season Opener


NGMSport got their 2017 season underway at the weekend with a trip to Silverstone for round 1 of the Dunlop Britcar Endurance Championship. With Javier Morcillo and Manuel Cintrano taking the wheel of the Mosler for their 6th assault on the championship time since 2011.

The championship appears to be back to full health following several years of depleted grids and this weekend fielded a grid of 32 cars on the shortened Silverstone International circuit. Among the challengers were a number of Ferrari 458's including a GT3 and a GTE as well as an Aston Martin Vantage GT3. The quality of the cars was matched by the quality of the drivers so Morcillo and Cintrano would face one of the toughest fields yet.

For the Spaniards however it was business as usual as they claimed their first pole position of the year, 0.278 seconds ahead of the Ferrari 458 GTE of Witt Gamski and Ross Wylie. In race 1 Morcillo started and led from the start and kept the lead until his pit stop on lap 26. Cintrano emerged back into the lead but was faced with the challenge of keeping Mike Wilds and Dino Zamparelli at bay. On lap 38 and with just 5 laps remaining of the 50 minute race, Cintrano succumbed and brought the Mosler home in P2 ahead of Gamski and Wylie.

Race 2 saw Cintrano take the start and a cautious approach into turn 1 saw him drop a couple of places before settling down into a comfortable P4. Lap 38 brought out a safety car which the team capitalized on by completing 3 pit stops which allowed them to fuel the car to the end whilst losing minimal time. The strategy put Morcillo 5 laps down at the end of the safety car period but as other pit stops shook out he gained 3 laps but disaster came on lap 64 when an ambitious move past the GTE Ferrari which was 2 laps behind the Mosler saw Morcillo tipped into the gravel.

Despite the disappointment the team were happy with the pace of the Mosler against the newer cars and are looking forward to a strong season.

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