Ollie Wilkinson can already be counted among the ranks of international GT3 multiple race winners, despite only beginning his racing career two years ago. Wilkinson’s rise up the ranks has been rapid, as he strives toward fulfilling his dream of competing in the FIA World Endurance Championship and the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
That dream is a huge step closer to coming to fruition in 2019. Ollie’s year got off to a tremendous start with his selection as the only GT3 driver to join the Aston Martin Racing Driver Academy, as he executes dual campaigns in the British GT Championship and International GT Open series.
Fast forward to May and the 23-year-old was upgraded to a Silver driver, as a Pro class pairing by GT Open. One round later and Wilkinson claimed an historic maiden outright GT3 win at the Red Bull Ring in the GT Open’s 200th anniversary race. Overall British GT victory at Spa-Francorchamps followed seven days later, sealing a fifth Silver Cup class win of the year, ahead of clinching the 2019 Silver Cup crown at the penultimate round of the season.
Since the age of five, Ollie has loved driving – preferably sideways, which perhaps explains some of his natural and previously un-tapped ability. After years of bending his father’s ear, Dad Peter relented and allowed Ollie to try a Radical SR3 at Bushy Park, Barbados, in 2016.
From there, Ollie went on to have his first race experience in a Ginetta G40, something that paved the way for a full season in the Ginetta GT5 Challenge for 2017. With only a single race weekend prior to the year, Wilkinson was unfazed by the steep learning curve ahead of him.
At the season-opening GT5 Challenge rounds at Oulton Park, Ollie dominated qualifying to claim his first career pole position by 1.123 seconds before delivering a pair of fifth places.
He continued to impress throughout his maiden season, eventually ranking third in the championship order, earning three pole positions, six podiums, five fastest laps and 17 out of 19 top-10 finishes among a 25+ strong grid of vastly more experienced drivers.
Wilkinson signed off a stellar rookie year with a second place Pro-Am finish on his GT Open debut in Barcelona in October 2017. A mere five second late-race penalty stole a maiden GT3 win on his first-time pairing with sportscar champion, Bradley Ellis, aboard the Optimum Motorsport Audi R8 LMS.
With the invaluable backing of My Possible Self, the innovative mental health self-help app, Ollie made the step up to European GT3 for 2018, contesting the majority of International GT Open rounds alongside his coach and mentor, Ellis.
Despite the step up to the 500bhp+ V10 Audi R8 LMS, Wilkinson proved he was more than ready his biggest challenge yet.
Although denied a certain first round GT Open win at Estoril due to a gearbox failure, the series debutant had already notched up his first Pro-Am victory come round two at Spa. Further class glory came on home ground at Silverstone, while a guest appearance in the GT Cup and hat-trick of dominant victories at Brands Hatch underlined his strong potential.
Ollie Wilkinson is ready to wrap up his 2019 racing season and first year driving the new Aston Martin Vantage GT3 this weekend, as he heads to Monza, Italy, for the final round of the International GT Open series with Optimum Motorsport.The 23-year-old Yorkshireman...
Ollie Wilkinson and co-driver, Aston Martin works driver Darren Turner, delivered a stellar recovery drive in the International GT Open at Barcelona, bouncing back from a non-finish on Saturday to climb 11 places and seize a top-five result on Sunday.The Optimum...
Ollie Wilkinson returns to International GT Open action this weekend (21-22 September) and heads back to Barcelona – the circuit where he first made his series debut just two years ago – eager to bounce back from a disappointing last home round with a return to the...