16 Apr British Champion Morris heads to Monza with ‘High Expectations’ as Blancpain Endurance Cup Begins
• Bentley racer Seb Morris aiming high for Blancpain debut in Italy
• Reigning British GT Champ relishing Monza return this weekend
• Morris targeting Pro-Am silverware in round one of 2018 season
High-profile Welsh racing driver Seb Morris says he is heading into the opening round of the Blancpain Endurance Cup season at Monza in Italy this coming weekend, 21st/22nd April, with ‘high expectations’ as the reigning British GT Champion sets his sights on a successful start to 2018.
Graduating into pan-European endurance racing this year with Team Parker Racing, the squad with which the Chester-based driver won the prized British GT crown last year, Morris is confident he and new team-mates Rob Smith and Derek Pierce have the potential to mount a Pro-Am title challenge.
Piloting the same generation Bentley Continental GT3 he raced last year in the UK, 22-year-old MSA Team UK driver Morris has already set his stall out impressively in pre-season testing where he bettered last year’s pole position time at Monza and ended the run quickest.
Of course, the Italian track is also one where the British Racing Drivers’ Club (BRDC) Rising Star has celebrated great success – as recently as last October when he won on his debut in the International GT Open where he partnered Craig Dolby in a Lamborghini Gallardo.
“I’m really looking forward to Monza, especially as we have such good momentum from winning British GT last year and winning at Monza in the [International] GT Open”, said a buoyant Morris, “In the test we did a few weeks ago I was fastest and beat the Blancpain pole time from last season, so that’s given us a lot of confidence.
“Our goal is to win Pro-Am this year, we’ve got high expectations and our sights are set on fighting for the title and trying to win our class at Monza on Sunday. I think we’re real dark horses, I don’t think people will expect us to be as competitive as we will be in the previous generation Bentley.”
Since announcing his 2018 programme in Blancpain last month, the driver line-up for the No.31 Team Parker Racing entry has been revised with 2017 European Le Mans Series LMGTE Champion Rob Smith replacing Ade Barwick alongside Morris and Scotland’s Derek Pierce.
Smith tested the Bentley Continental at Silverstone last Friday, 13th April, where a successful day was enjoyed and Morris is increasingly bullish for his first season in the world’s biggest and best GT endurance championship as the three-hour Monza race edges ever nearer.
“It’s great to have Rob part of the team, he’s a very quick driver and a champion in the European Le Mans Series so he brings great experience”, said Morris, “When we tested with Rob at Silverstone he had a beaming smile when he got out of the car, which is a good sign! Derek [Pierce] is right where he needs to be too, he’s quick in the Bentley and fast around Monza so we’re all very positive.”
Official testing at Monza will take place on Friday, 20th April, with additional practice following on Saturday, 21st April, ahead of pre-qualifying. On Sunday, 22nd April, final qualifying will begin at 09.45 (local time) with round one of the season beginning at 15.00 (local time).
Qualifying and Monza’s three-hour race will both be streamed live online HERE with live TV coverage of Sunday’s race set to be screened in the UK on digital satellite and cable channel Motorsport TV.