Competitive British GT Debut For Team Redline Racing At Oulton Park
Team Redline Racing christened its all-new Lamborghini Huracan GT3 with a top-eight performance over two competitive rounds of the 2022 British GT Championship at Oulton Park over the Easter weekend (16-18 April).
The Teesside-based squad began the first chapter of its journey into the top-level GT3 class of the British GT Championship, bringing their Lamborghini to the Cheshire circuit for former one-make Porsche drivers James Dorlin and Alex Malykhin.
It would be a learning weekend for the whole team and its drivers, with experienced GT4 racer and 2020 Porsche Sprint Challenge GB champion Dorlin showing strong pace in testing on Friday to put the car inside the top six on initial pace.
Two hour-long practice sessions on Saturday allowed the team to gain vital data and knowledge in their new machine heading into the rapid two-part qualifying session. Rookie Malykhin shone with a superb time good enough to put the Lamborghini sixth on the grid for the first race on the Oulton Park International circuit; Dorlin backing him up with eighth in the competitive Pro class shoot-out.
Easter Monday would host the brace of hour-long races. Starting sixth for the opener, Malykhin was not shy in challenging the fellow Am front-runners as he lunged around the outside into Old Hall for a top-three placing from the rolling start, but ran wide across the grass in his efforts.
Surviving contact before handing the car over to experienced racer Dorlin, the latter fought hard to make up ground from 14th place. Moving onto the fringes of the top 10, a fine move on Jamie Caroline's Mercedes was dampened by having to take evasive action from a lapped GT4 car onto the grass at the first corner, spinning into the barriers as he tried to recover to the tarmac.
The Teesside team put the setback to the back of their minds and a rapid repair job ensured the car would fight on from eighth in race two under mixed conditions. A strong opening stint from Dorlin kept the Redline Lamborghini in the fight with the front-runners before a red flag interrupted proceedings during the pit window.
On the 25-minute restart, Malykhin survived a quick rotation to recover his way through the field, fighting back into the top 10 and passing two cars on track to seal a solid eighth place finish to end the team's maiden British GT outing on a high note.
Simon Leonard – Managing Director: “It's been very much an educational weekend for all of us involved here, but we can be proud of ourselves considering it's the first weekend for us with a new car and taking on a hugely competitive GT3 field in British GT for the first time.
"James and Alex both showed what they can be capable of, and with more miles under their belts I'm confident they can challenge for great results this season, so we'll look for more gains when we get to Silverstone."
Redline Racing's next visit in British GT will be for the Silverstone 500 event at the GP circuit next month (7/8 May), with a three-hour contest in store. Prior to that though, they will contest the Porsche Carrera Cup GB season opener at Donington Park this weekend (23/24 April).
Image from Jakob Ebrey Photography.