Ben Barker was fastest in free practiceBen Barker set the fastest time of the day as the Porsche Carrera Cup GB entered a new era with the first competitive running of the new 991 GT3 Cup car. 

The Oxford based driver didn’t have it all his own way with double-champion Michael Meadows leading the way in first practice and scholar Josh Webster not far behind him. Ben only did twenty-four laps in the car before deciding to park the car up. “The tyres were shot,” said Ben. “There’s no point in just pounding round when the tyres are no good.”

Sure enough, come the second practice session when he, and the rest of the grid had access to new tyres, Ben put in a series of laps allowing him to set a time of 46.288 and P1.

“The car felt good.” Said Ben. “There’s definitely more time in it. Getting used to the new front tyre, which gives a lot of grip, is a new hurdle but I hope to extract the maximum from the car tomorrow and get pole position.”

“Ben did a good job,” said tea boss Paul Robe. “There’s a lot of expectation but his professionalism and quality showed through. We should be looking good for qualifying tomorrow.”

Peter Kyle-Henney put valuable mileage in on his debut as a Carrera Cup driver, completing more laps than anyone else in the first session. The ProAm 2 class has a number of his old sparing partners from GT3 Cup Challenge also taking part, so battle was resumed. Steve Liquorish set the pace but Peter wasn’t far behind in third, setting a time only three tenths of a second slower.

Peter Kyle-Henney in free practiceThe second session didn’t go quite as well when a coming together with Webster punctured his radiator leading to an early end to the day. Despite the disappointment he proved his pace in the class and has plenty of positives to build on for tomorrow’s qualifying. “It wasn’t the end to the day I would have liked but we’ll look at things and I’ll talk to Ben (Barker - driver coach) and we’ll attack in qualifying.” Said Peter.

Kieran Gallagher got his first taste of a 991 GT3 Cup car this morning when the cars rolled for the first time in free practice one. The last time he had been around here was in a front wheel drive VW Scirocco so there was plenty to learn as he adapted his driving style and racing lines to suit the characteristics of the of the more powerful, rear wheel drive Porsche. Nevertheless he clocked up forty laps in the first session and another 47 in session two. His times were not representative of his pace as the former Touring Car driver concentrated on understanding the car and working on set up with the team. Sure enough there was a big improvement between the sessions as he got bolder and was able to explore the car’s limits.

“Kieran was getting familiar with the car and the second session was a big improvement in lap time and braking. Realistically if he makes the same improvements tomorrow he’ll move up the grid considerably. It was frustrating for Peter today as he didn’t find the rhythm he had in testing but he’ll sleep on it and come back so we can help him find it for qualifying.”