McLaren 570S GT4 scores first win of 2017 at Oulton Park
18 Apr 2017
The McLaren 570S GT4 has scored its first win of the season in the opening round of the 2017 British GT Championship at Oulton Park, UK. Customer team track-club, with drivers Adam Balon and Adam MacKay, took overall GT4 victory during the first of two races over the Bank Holiday weekend, as all six examples of the latest GT racing model from McLaren showed pace and reliability.
From the outset of the weekend’s racing activities, the pace of the 570S GT4 looked strong. Building on the year of experience at the wheel of the track-honed McLaren Sports Series model, GT Driver Academy pairing of Ciaran Haggerty and Sandy Mitchell in the #100 Black Bull Garage 59 car secured pole position for the first race and would line up in P2 for the start of the second.
Heavy rain during the first race of the weekend made for tricky conditions. As drivers got to grips with a busy circuit featuring more than 30 entries, the track-club duo performed well and stayed out of trouble on the notoriously tough track. With consistent pace and a quick pit stop, the pair catapulted into the lead in the second half. After a trouble-free first stint in the hour-long sprint, Balon handed over to MacKay for the run to the flag. Further down the order, the 570S GT4 of Tolman Motorsport also achieved success, with Joe Osborne and David Pattison claiming a podium in the GT4 Pro/Am class.
Despite the track drying out for the second race of the Easter Bank Holiday meeting, the on-track action was far more frantic, but just as successful for the McLaren racers. The #29 In2 Racing 570S GT4 of Matthew Graham and Marcus Hoggarth climbed from P11 to P2 overall in the GT4 standings, claiming the GT4 Pro/Am class victory as a result. The #59 570S GT4 of customer team Black Bull Garage 59 also finished in a podium spot, with Dean MacDonald and Akhil Rabindra on thier British GT debuts. The young pair secured P3 in the GT4 Silver Cup division after a hard-fought run in the race, which was red flagged after an incident between two GT3 cars towards the end.
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McLaren Automotive is a British manufacturer of luxury, high-performance sports and super cars, located at the McLaren Technology Centre (MTC) in Woking, Surrey. For the past 30 years, McLaren has pioneered the use of carbon fibre in vehicle production and since introducing a carbon chassis into racing and road cars with the 1981 McLaren MP4/1 and 1993 McLaren F1 respectively, McLaren has not built a car without a carbon fibre chassis.
Following the global launch of McLaren Automotive in 2010, the groundbreaking 12C was revealed in 2011, the 12C Spider in 2012, and the limited-run McLaren P1™ went into production in 2013. In keeping with its plan to introduce a new model each year, the company unveiled the 650S, in Coupé and Spider form in 2014, while 2015 proved to be a year of unprecedented growth of the product portfolio with five new models launched across the full range. The strictly limited edition 675LT Coupé premiered at the Geneva Motor Show alongside the track-only McLaren P1™ GTR which, with 1,000PS, became the most powerful model ever produced by the brand. The much-anticipated Sports Series became the third – and final – model tier in the McLaren range with the 570S Coupé and 540C Coupé debuting in New York and Shanghai respectively, less than one month apart. The end of 2015 saw the launch of the fifth model, the 675LT Spider, which was as a direct response to customer demand. The year also saw the end of production for the first model in the Ultimate Series as the 375th McLaren P1™ was completed, closing what had become a defining year for the British brand. 2016 continued where 2015 had left off with the introduction of the 570GT - a second bodystyle for the Sports Series and the most luxurious car McLaren has ever built – as well as the 570S GT4 and 570S Sprint track variants. 2016 also marked the introduction of the company’s new business plan, Track22, which sees the company investing £1B in Research and Development to deliver 15 all new cars or derivatives by the end of 2022, of which at least 50 percent will feature hybrid technology. The uplift in sales in 2016 also saw the launch of the second shift at the McLaren Production Centre as well as the company’s third year of profitability in just six years of trading.
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