- Class win for Sky Tempesta Racing despite challenging weekend at Donington Park
- Tse and Froggatt make inroads in Silver-Am Drivers’ Championship to take championship lead
- Team nails race setup of McLaren 720S GT3 Evo to recover from struggles of qualifying
Kevin Tse 謝榮鍵 took to the Donington Park circuit for the first time in his career for Round 4 of the Intelligent Money British GT Championship, which was held this past weekend from the 26th to the 28th of May 2023. It was Tse’s first attempt at the daunting track, but the team managed to snag their maiden class victory of the 2023 season after the faultless performance and both the drivers now sit in the lead of the class drivers’ standings. It was by no means a smooth sailing weekend for the Contempo Concept-sponsored Sky Tempesta Racing team, which struggled in their #93 McLaren 720 GT3 Evo all throughout practice and qualifying. Nevertheless, the team gambled on some changes and made a brilliant recovery drive to get onto the top step of the podium.
The weekend kicked off with several uncertainties for the team, being an unfamiliar track for Tse and the car not performing to the maximum. Struggling with handling, both drivers did not have ultimate confidence throughout practice and qualifying and were finding it extremely difficult to challenge the top times in each session. A rather understated and disappointing qualifying left the duo to start the 2-hour race from P16 overall, which was P4 in the Silver-Am class. With nothing to lose, the team analysed the data, eventually deciding to gamble and change the car setup dramatically for the race to negate the problems being faced on track.
The 34 drivers lined up for the starting grid on Sunday, with Tse in the #93 car on the 8th row along with a heap of unknowns with respect to car performance following the last-minute setup change. As is typical in the highly challenging and competitive British GT, the drivers got underway with an urgent intent to make up positions right at the start. Almost immediately, Tse was showing a better pace and much to the relief of the team the gamble seemed to be paying off as he looked a lot more comfortable and surer of where to place the car. Realizing the resurgence of a competitive pace, he began to string together consistently fast lap times and close the gap to the cars in front. He showed excellent driving skill making overtakes and avoiding some incidents with lightning-fast reactions, which kept the team in the hunt for a long-awaited class win.
An extremely strong and handy first stint from Tse came to an end as he handed the Sky-liveried McLaren, leading in class, over to his teammate Froggatt under a Safety Car near the 1-hour mark. The Safety Car period lasted for almost half of the British driver’s closing stint due to a major incident on track. Froggatt once again displayed mega pace in the car, matching some of the higher-rated front-running drivers and maintaining the class lead right through to the chequered flag. It was an absolutely flawless performance by both driver and the team to make the right strategy calls and put themselves up the order.
Sky Tempesta Racing was overjoyed to take their maiden win in the season. With this stunning result, the drivers have propelled forward in the Silver-Am Drivers’ standings to P1. Tse and Froggatt look confident in seeing out the championship fight as the series nears the halfway point of the season. Both drivers have shown excellent adaptation to the new machinery this year and securing this elusive win is a testament to the growth. Tse is already looking ahead and preparing for the double round coming up in Snetterton in mid-June to carry this winning momentum forward.
Kevin Tse | Driver, #93 Sky Tempesta Racing McLaren 720S GT3 Evo
“Another team effort, even though we were a bit down during qualifying, we never gave up. We took a look at a lot of data and did a load of analysis, eventually making the right setup for the race and bouncing back very strongly. Finally, the first win of the Silver-Am class for the year. We didn’t expect it, but in the end, the race was so good and everyone did so well to not make any mistakes. We also avoided a lot of crashes, which was important. Very happy and thrilled, looking forward to the next one!”