FIRST BLOOD TO NIARCHOS & MULLEN
The Avon Tyres British GT Championship got off to a cracking start at Oulton Park this Easter weekend with victory for Chris Niarchos and Tim Mullen in the Scuderia Ecosse Ferrari, the first win in Britain for the Ferrari 430 GT.
Niarchos started the race from second on the grid behind Luke Hines in the LNT Panoz. Clearly displeased to be overtaken by Phil Keen in the Mosler, Chris breezed through at Knickerbrook to retake second and headed off after the Panoz. Niarchos soon had the gap down to nothing and pitted at the same time as the Panoz, sending Tim Mullen off after Tom Kimber- Smith.
Mullen made light work of the Panoz, soon passing Kimber-Smith for the race lead. He then let the Ferrari stretch its legs, finally taking the chequered flag by a margin of over 20 seconds.
Chris Niarchos: "That was a cracking race and I am absolutely over the moon with the result! I want to dedicate this win to the mechanics who have worked tirelessly for the last two years to help Tim and I get here. We were always the bridesmaid and never the bride so it's a good feeling to be the winners! It looked like the Panoz had cooked rears after a while so all I had to do was keep the pressure on Luke (Hines) and hand over to Tim. I think we have a great season ahead of us!"
Tim Mullen: "It all worked out perfectly for us today. Chris had a mega first stint so all I had to do was find a way past Tom (Kimber-Smith). I got him up the inside of Island bend and to be fair to him he drove very cleanly. We are absolutely delighted with this result."
Stewart Roden: "Chris has done an amazing job; the improvements he has made over the winter are immense. He is fitter than ever, has worked really hard and thoroughly deserves the win today. He and Tim make a good team and it's great for us to start the season in exactly the same way as last year!" Scuderia Ecosse will be back on track this Monday for round two of the British GT Championship. Tim Mullen has already put the Ferrari on pole for this race so they are already off to a good start.