Forfar teenager Sandy Mitchell returns to action in the British GT Championship this weekend (April 15-17) in the season-opener at Oulton Park.
And the 17-year-old, who has completed an intensive pre-season test schedule, is targeting the British GT4 title in his 180mph Black Bull Garage 59 McLaren 570S .
“Pre-season testing has gone very well,” Mitchell, who won two races last year in his debut season in British GT, explained. “So we’re feeling positive heading into the first round at Oulton.
“We identified a couple of things we can improve in relation to the set-up, but overall the tests were excellent. Our lap times were good too, but of course, we won’t know where we really stand until the first qualifying session. But we’re feeling quietly positive.”
Mitchell, who will again partner fellow Scot, 20-year-old Ciaran Haggerty in the McLaren, has tested his car at Oulton, Rockingham and Silverstone in the build-up to this weekend’s race.
While local companies Thorntons, Close Brothers, Stirfresh and SGM continue their support from last season, Mitchell now has additional backing from Christie Digital and Stampede Global, both of which operate on a worldwide stage.
And the talented teenager, who last season became the youngest-ever race winner in British GT, and was named Rookie of the Year, admitted he can’t wait to get back into race action this season, which starts with two one-hour races on Easter Monday.
“It’s been a while since we won the final race of the season at Donington last year,” Mitchell continued. “I’m looking forward to going racing again. I can’t wait for the race weekend buzz.
“I’ve got the same car and same team-mate again this season, so hopefully we’ll hit the ground running, which we already seem to have done in testing. We’ve been quick right out of the box, so it’s looking good.
“Primarily we’re focusing on challenging for race wins right from the start of the season. If we manage to consistently push for wins and bag podiums, that will evolve into us challenging for the championship as we get towards the end of the season.
“Obviously the GT4 title is the ultimate goal. But the grid’s a bit stronger than it was last season, so the challenge is higher. We’ve got the champions from last year back, so it’s going to be a tough grid. But we’re determined to do everything we can to push for the title.”