Bri­tish GT re­verts to us­ing safety car rules

Motor Sport News - - Racing News -

Bri­tish GT or­gan­is­ers have post­poned the use of the con­tro­ver­sial Full Course Yel­low Code 80 rule un­til fur­ther no­tice af­ter a trou­bled de­but at Brands Hatch last week­end.

Bri­tish GT had adopted the sys­tem, which is used in Euro­pean GT rac­ing, for last week­end’s opener, but it will be shelved fol­low­ing crit­i­cism from teams.

The rule re­places the use of a safety car pe­riod by restrict­ing all cars on the track to 80km/h (around 50mph) when an ac­ci­dent has oc­curred. Cars are tracked by a delta lap time to en­sure they stick to the speed limit, but there were mul­ti­ple in­stances of driv­ers and teams mis­in­ter­pret­ing the rule last week­end.

Rick Parfitt Jr was lead­ing the race in his Team Parker Rac­ing Bent­ley Con­ti­nen­tal GT3, but lost a lot of time dur­ing the cau­tion pe­riod. He said: “The rule needs to be looked at be­cause some driv­ers weren’t stick­ing to 80km/h. I had a 14-sec­ond lead when the full course yel­low started, and a one-sec­ond lead a few laps later. How does that hap­pen?”

Cen­tury Mo­tor­sport Ginetta G55 GT4 driver Nathan Freke added: “Some cars weren’t go­ing fast enough and there were some big dif­fer­ences in lap times. Th­ese cars only have one speed lim­iter, which is for the pits, so to stick to 80km/h you’re re­ly­ing on each driver’s right foot. Also some cars slowed as soon as they got the ra­dio mes­sage for FCY, and oth­ers kept go­ing un­til the first yel­low flag.”

Bri­tish GT man­ager Ben­jamin Franasso­vici held a meet­ing with of­fi­cials, teams and time­keep­ers fol­low­ing the race and has de­cided to re­vert to us­ing a safety car un­til fur­ther no­tice.

He said: “We knew there would be grem­lins with FCY Code 80, but there were too many as­pects out­side of our con­trol last week­end so we will not use it again un­til we can fully con­trol it. FCY is the way for­ward, and every­body was happy we in­tro­duced it, but we have to re­fine it.”

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