Optimum Motorsport - One of the best British GT4 teams
Optimum Motorsport, founded in 2007 with headquarters in Wakefield in West Yorkshire. is the British racing team which competes in various championships.
In its early days, Optimum Motorsport competed in the Ginetta GT5 Challenge, a support championship of British GT and BTCC, and the team has had great success in the leading one-make sports car championship since its inception. Ginetta GT5 Challenge was just a springboard and over the years Optimum Motorsport was prepared to enter higher levels of motorsport.
The biggest step forward was made in 2012 when Shaun Goff became Team Principal. He had a solid experience in competitive motor racing and his background lies in car preparation and development. His knowledge and enthusiasm led Optimum Motorsport to many wins and titles in the following years.
Maiden British GT title was won in 2013
In its first year in the British GT, Optimum Motorsport entered both GT3 and GT4 classes running the Ginettas. The maiden victory in the class was scored the 7th round of the season at Snetterton, with Lee Mowle and George Murrells as drivers of Ginetta G50 GT4.
The following year was very good for Optimum Motorsport, even after the team entered only one Ginetta G50 in the GT4 class. Ryan Ratcliffe and Rick Parfitt Jr scored three wins – two at Snetterton and one at Brands Hatch – and had other four podiums before winning the GT4 championship title, finishing just two points ahead of Century Motorsport’s Declan Jones.
In 2014 Optimum Motorsport continued to run one car in the British GT but four drivers were sharing the duties in the seat of the new Ginetta G55. The results weren’t as good as in the previous year, so Optimum Motorsport finished that season without a win and at 8th position in the GT4 Teams’ Championship.
Debut in the GT3 class
Optimum Motorsport expanded its British GT operations to two Ginettas in 2015 and that was a very fine season. The car #50 of Graham Johnson and Mike Robinson won the season-opening race at Oulton Park in the GT4 class. Later in the season, they scored other five podiums nad finished as runners-up in the Drivers’ Championship while Optimum Motorsport was 3rd in the Teams’ Championship.
Finally, in 2016 was made a decision of making a debut in the GT3 class of British GT with Audi R8 LMS, with Will Moore and Ryan Ratcliffe as drivers. They scored twice before finishing 13th in the standings.
In the GT4 class, the results were much better. Johnson and Robinson were behind the wheel of Ginetta G55 and scored three wins – at Brands Hatch and twice at Oulton Park. They also had other three podiums on the way to the Drivers’ Championship title and the 2nd position in the Teams’ Championship.
Good results at Dubai 24h
Since 2012, when Shaun Goff became Team Principal, Optimum Motorsport began to participate in selected endurance racing events, mainly in the 24h Series. The same year Ginetta G50 with Lee Mowle, Joe Osborne, Gary Simms, and George Murrells won the SP3 class at Dubai 24 Hours.
Another win in the SP3 class at Dubai 24h was scored in 2015 when Euan Hankey, Salih Yoluc, Bradley Ellis, and Adrian Barwick were behind the wheel of Ginetta G55. The same year Optimum Motorsport also won Mugello 12h with Barwick, Ellis, and Flick Haigh driving a Ginetta G55.
Hat-trick at Dubai was scored in 2017 when Optimum Motorsport triumphed at Dubai 24h SP3 class for the third time, this time with Barwick, Stewart Linn, William Moore, and Daniel O’Brien behind the wheel of the highly successful Ginetta.
Focus on Le Mans GT Cup
Optimum Motorsport decided to pull out of the GT3 program in the middle of 2016 British GT campaign and switched focus on the 2nd season of Michelin Le Mans Cup’s GT 3 class as well as on Road to Le Mans, with Joe Osborne and Flick Haigh as drivers of Audi R8 LMS.