Mclaren Young Professional driver Charlie Fagg took Mclaren’s maiden victory in the ADAC GT4 championship at the weekend at the Nurburgring in Team GT’s 570s.
Qualifying proved to be a character building session as the 19 year old didn’t manage to get the most out of his Team GT prepared machine. Never the less Fagg ended his session with a time that would put him 6th for the first race of the weekend. Fagg’s team mate, Michael Benyahia would do a time in qualifying 2, that would put the #33 car 14th.
Race 1 would see Fagg start the 60 minute race. With a determination to rectify his qualifying performance it was apparent that Fagg had his sights on victory. As the lights went out Fagg slotted up the inside into turn 1 and up 1 position into P5. As the race settled in Fagg set a constant pace and slowly began a very mature drive, picking off his competitors one by one. An awesome lunge into turn 1 saw Fagg pass his fellow Mclaren pilot, Freddie Martin-Dye for P2, and with the leading Mercedes 3 seconds up the road, and only 15 minutes left of Fagg’s stint it would seem tricky for the 19 year old to get into the lead. Some amazing push laps saw #33 car latch onto the back of the Mercedes, and as the pit window opened the leading Mercedes pitted early and handed the lead to Fagg. A concession of fast laps and a later pit stop saw the Team GT car hold P1 as Fagg’s team mate, Benhayia, emerged out of the pits post driver change. Benyahia then drove a great stint to fend off the pack behind and brought home the Mclaren 570s GT4 home in P1.
Race 2 would see Fagg’s teammate Benyahia start from P14. A huge downpour before the start would mean the #33 car would start on wet tyres. A stunning start and opening half of the race from Benyahia would see him get up into P5 as the pit window opened. A now fully dry track, but with rain clouds looming would see the teams all concerned on which tyre to choose in the pitstop. As Benyahia pitted in P5, Team GT chose to put Fagg out on slicks – the only car on the grid to do so. A 7 second success penalty from victory in race 1, and the tyre change would see Fagg emerge down in P17. As soon as Fagg got his slick tyres up to working temperature, the #33 car set the timing screen a light. Fagg was the fastest man on track by some 4-6 seconds per lap!! A stunning stint saw Fagg climb up to P4!! However, the weather Gods were not to be on his side. With 4 minutes to go and a potential podium on the cards, the heavens opened and during the final 3 laps Fagg would slip back down to P7. A strong haul of points for the #33 Team GT Mclaren 570s.