BES: Paul Ricard HTTT

5 July 2013

A really quite fascinating track with repeating lines that give a really useful framing aid and present the cars in quite a sterile environment which makes for some interesting photos

This year, so far at least, has been full of new opportunities for me. I’ve had my first visit to new circuits such as Oulton Park, Rockingham, Autodromo Nazionale Monza, the Nürburgring and more recently the Circuit de la Sarthe. In the past 9 weeks alone I’ve experienced 10 events, three Avon Tyres British GT Championship rounds, two 24 hour races – both legendary in their own regards, and even two visits to Silverstone.

Last weekend I was lucky enough to be jetting off (having just got back from Le Mans) to Nice in the South of France for the third round of the Blancpain Endurance Series. Just a relatively short drive from Nice Airport, which bought back many memories of the video game Driv3r, is the Circuit Le Castellet – also known as Paul Ricard High Tech Test Track (HTTT). The track itself is really quite fascinating, the repeating lines across the circuit give a really useful framing aid and present the cars in quite a sterile environment with only the graphical lines surrounding them – what I hadn’t expected was the beautiful scenery that surrounded the circuit. The French hills wrapped around the circuit creating this idyllic location for a racing circuit – the weather certainly helped this matter.

The race itself was won by the #3 Marc VDS Racing Team BMW Z4 GT3 in a thrilling battle between themselves at the #7 McLaren MP4-12C GT3 ran by Hexis Racing in the PRO class. In Pro-Am the Belgian Boutsen Ginion McLaren MP4-12C GT3 took the win with the well known RJN Motorsport Nissan GT-R NISMO GT3 finishing in second. Gentlemans Trophy was won by SOFREV Auto Sport Promotion’s Ferrari F458 Italia GT3. The next round of the Blancpain Endurance Series takes place at the end of the month at the legendary Spa Francorchamps for the TOTAL Spa 24 Hours.

It must be said at this point that, unfortunately, during the Lamborghini Super Trofeo race another life was claimed. Andrea Mamé unfortunately succumbed to his injuries after a multiple car collision took place at the start of the race on Sunday. Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this difficult time.

Coming Soon – A Trip to Monaco