30 July, 2012
British racer Matt Bell is hoping that a change of car will bring about a change of fortune in his 2012 British GT campaign this weekend. The United Autosports driver will switch from the Audi R8 to the McLaren MP4-12C GT3 car for the Snetterton round of the championship, alongside his regular team-mate Charles Bateman.
The duo, both winners in 2011, have had a rocky ride so far in British GT this year, despite leading the first race at Oulton Park and running in the top three at Rockingham and Brands Hatch before bad luck came their way.
"We had what I can only describe as a 'character-building' start to the season," said Matt. "We struggled for pace for various reasons but we did manage to run at the front a few times. Hopefully now we have got all of our bad luck out of the way. Situations like that teach you to knuckle down and keep working hard to make things better so hopefully the combination of our strong desire to win and the arrival of the McLaren MP4-12C as our British GT car will start to yield some top results."
The switch to the McLaren MP4-12C GT3 car gives Matt the opportunity to make a fresh start at Snetterton. With two one-hour races there are two sets of points on offer so it's an important weekend to get right.
"We know the McLaren well as it is the car we have been racing in the Blancpain Endurance Series," explained Matt. "I have tested it at Snetterton a couple of times this year and it felt very good, so I'm hoping that will carry into the race weekend. I will approach this weekend the same as any other; I'm turning up to win. The championship title is almost completely out of reach for us now, so I have set my sights on winning the remaining races of the season. Every race is an important one for me as we close out the year."
The track action at Snetterton begins on Saturday at 0930hrs with the first free practice session. Qualifying starts later that day at 1740hrs with the two one-hour races kicking off on Sunday at 1130hrs and 1650hrs. Live timing will be available at www.tsl-timing.com and the races will be broadcast on Channel 4 on the morning of Saturday 18 August.