Bell & Guasch in "maximum attack" mode as they face uphill battle for BGT honors at Silverstone
Anglo-American team wins race against time to prepare R8 LMS for Bintcliffe & Palmer
Maximum attack is the only course of action left for Matt Bell (GB) and Mike Guasch (USA) when they line-up for the 10th and final round of the Avon Tyres British GT Championship at Silverstone (GB) on Saturday (October 8).
The Anglo-American "combo" will start the two-hour finale only third in the championship standings despite eight top-10 results and just one retirement, 11-points off the championship lead.
But with 37.5pts up for grabs for the race winners, the championship "crown" is still on offer to 12 drivers in the title race.
The Leeds-based team has been in a race against time to re-build the John Bintcliffe (GB)/Jay Palmer (GB) R8 LMS. Bintcliffe suffered a high-speed accident in qualifying for the previous round at Donington Park (GB) last month.
The heavy impact with a concrete retaining wall destroyed the #24 Teknavo Audi necessitating a multitude of new parts from quattro GmbH in Germany and subsequently a complete rebuild in readiness for Silverstone's two-hour race around the 3.66-mile "Grand Prix" track.
Richard Dean and Bell were present for United Autosports' stunning American Le Mans Series début in which Dean's fellow team co-owner Zak Brown (USA), United Autosports' FIA GT3 driver Mark Patterson (USA) and Stefan Johansson (SE) finished second in the LM P2 category in the 1,000-mile Petit Le Mans race last Saturday (October 1).
Avon Tyres British GT Championship (after nine rounds):
1 Geddie/Geddie, 121.5-points
2 Griffin/Cameron, 113.5pts
3 Matt Bell & Mike Guasch, 110.5pts
23 John Bintcliffe & Jay Palmer, 23pts
Points will be awarded at Silverstone as follows:
1st 37.5pts; 2nd 27pts; 3rd 22.5pts; 4th 18pts; 5th 15pts; 6th 12pts; 7th 9pts; 8th 6pts; 9th 3pts; 10th 1.5pts
A race win for Bell/Guasch nets them the championship but only if the Geddies are third or lower. Second place would also be good enough so long as Geddies are fifth or lower and the race is not won by Cameron/Griffin, Lyons/Bateman or Ashburn. Third also wins them the title if Geddies are seventh or lower, Ashburn doesn't win, and Cameron/Griffin and/or Lyons/Bateman are behind.
Friday October 7 – 0900-0950 BGT Practice 1; 1420-1510 BGT Practice 2
Saturday October 8 - 0935-1010 BGT Qualifying; 1600-1800 BGT Race
* All times are UK "local"
#23 Molecule – Audi R8 LMS
Matt Bell (GB). Age: 21. Born: Newcastle-upon-Tyne, T&W. Lives: Barningham, N. Yorks, England:
"We have certainly a mountain to climb at Silverstone. Even if we win the race, it's down to where other people finish in terms of the championship. So we just need to make sure we do a good job and win the race and then see if luck has been with us. The FIA GT3 races at Silverstone in June didn't go particularly well for us but the Audi is better now. I do believe we are down in terms of the 'Balance of Performance' compared to the Ferraris and Porsches. They have more aero parts which gives them more grip and that's where we struggle in comparison."
Michael Guasch (USA). Age: 53. Born: Palo Alto, California. Lives: Walnut Creek, California, USA:
"I have raced at Silverstone previously and while it's not one of my favorite tracks it could be depending on the result! We will be competitive but cannot afford to make any mistakes. The mistakes in the previous race at Donington were all down to me – the team was flawless. I will be looking to make amends, rest assured of that."
Richard Dean (GB), Managing Director & Co-Owner of United Autosports:
"Our goal is simple. We concentrate solely on winning the race and not thinking about the championship. We need to be decisive and aggressive."
Created in 2009, United Autosports is co-owned by American Zak Brown and Briton Richard Dean, both successful entrepreneurs and international race car drivers. The unique Anglo-American racing team fields GT3 class Audi R8 LMS sports cars from its United Kingdom headquarters in Leeds. It also races a fleet of "Legends of Motorsports" historic racing cars from its US facility in Indianapolis, Indiana. In 2011, the team competes in full-seasons of FIA GT3 European Championship, Avon Tyres British GT Championship and the "Legends of Motorsports" series. It will additionally contest selected GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series events, the 24 Hours of Spa (Belgium) and Macau GT Cup race (China).
Audi R8 LMS
V10 5.2-liter engine, 4 valves per cylinder, petrol direct injection, 365-412 kW (496-560 PS), emission control by two racing catalytic converters, rear-wheel-drive, traction control (ASR), sequential pneumatic activated 6-speed sport gearbox with shift-paddles, Audi Space Frame (ASF) made of aluminum with bolted steel roll-cage, carbon-fiber composite/aluminum bodywork, Avon radial tires. Start weight 1,305kg. Limitation at 8500rpm for every gear. Developed by Audi Sport with cooperation from quattro GmbH. Won seven championships across Europe in 2009-2010 plus Spa 24 Hours class victory in début 2009 season and Nürburgring 24 Hours class victories in 2009-2010 and scoring a total 64 victories.
Date of issue: Sunday October 2, 2011
Bell, Bintcliffe, Guasch & Palmer biographies plus team & car profiles are available on the United Autosports website http://www.unitedautosports.com/
A comprehensive library of Editorial Copyright Free photographs can be downloaded at www.flickr.com/unitedautosports/sets
For further information, please contact:
Audi UK Sport Press
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