Alice Powell made history at Silverstone this weekend as she became the first female driver ever to win a Formula Renault race in Britain after a dominant drive in round four of the Protyre Formula Renault BARC Championship.
Earlier in the day the Chipping Norton based driver finished a strong second place and would start the second race of the weekend from pole position after a great qualifying run.
Powell gained a small advantage at the start when Fortec Motorsport’s Joseph Reilly failed to make the start after being due to start alongside on the front row.
As the race got under way pole-sitter Powell made a great start followed by James Theodore as round three winner Mitchell Hale made a slow start. As the field came around to complete the first lap it was obvious that Powell was going to dominate the race as she pulled away from Theodore and Kourosh Khani.
A few laps later and Powell was leading by two seconds with a four-car-train forming behind her lead by Theodore and Khani. Hale was making a comeback after his disasterous start and joined Luke Wright behind Theodore and Kani as they looked to hunt down Powell.
This wasn’t to be though as Powell pulled out a bigger advantage, leading by five seconds ahead of Theodore, Hale and Webster.
With Powell out front she had nothing to worry about, but this wasn’t the case for Theodore who now had his mirrors full of Hale’s car. On the penultimate lap Hale made his move, passing Theodore at Brooklands to take second place.
Powell would cross the line almost seven seconds ahead of Hale and enter the history books in doing so. Hale and Theodore made up the podium with Khani finishing a strong fourth.
After the race an elated Powell said “I can't believe it, to take my first win is absolutely fantastic – it's been a long time coming! After six months out of the car I had to get my head around things again at Brands Hatch during the first round but here, we were strong all the way through the weekend.”
“Obviously I want to thank everyone at Hillspeed for doing a great job and especially Sarah (Shaw – Manor Competition co-owner) for engineering my car. My aim is to go for the championship, if we can take wins along the way then that's fantastic but consistency will be the main thing.”
Photo credit: Jakob Ebrey Photography