Josh Webster continued his strong start to the 2011 Protyre Formula Renault BARC Championship with his second podium of the season in Round Three of the championship at Brands Hatch. A top six finish in Round Four sees him move into fifth place in the championship standings.
The Fortec Motorsport driver was unlucky to miss out on pole position in qualifying for the first race, missing out on pole by just 0.005 seconds as he took second place. Qualifying for race two was more troublesome, with the floor on his car coming loose, forcing him to miss track time as they repaired it. He eventually managed to get back on track and salvage sixth place.
In race one, the MSA Academy member was unable to usurp pole-sitter and team-mate Kieran Vernon into Paddock Hill for the first time, meaning the 17 year old had to slip into second. He shadowed Vernon throughout the race but was unable to find a way past, finishing in second.
Race two saw the Admiral Group, Integra ICT, Sunwise and Flying Saucer backed driver move into fifth from the start, before slipping into sixth on lap two. He regained the place on lap eleven when Vernon crashed out, holding onto the place till the finish, missing out on the fastest lap by just 0.08 seconds.
Josh commented: “It was all about qualifying this weekend, as it always is at Brands Indy. The first session was really close and we only just missed taking pole position. In the race I got away well and had a good run into Paddock but Kieran had the door closed and that was it, we had to settle for second.
“In race two, my tyres seemed to take ages to come on so that made things pretty difficult early on but fifth in the end gives us more good points for the championship which is what we need. It's a real shame we had the problem with the floor of the car coming unbolted in second qualifying as we could easily have been on the podium again if we'd been on the first two rows.”
Webster's car was sporting a new purple livery for the Brands weekend, in deference to main sponsor Nine Telecom Group. The Stowmarket racer also hosted thirty guests at the Kent circuit and was delighted to reward them with the podium finish.
Josh concluded: “I'm so grateful to all my sponsors and especially Nine Telecom, without their support I wouldn't be racing – it's as simple as that. I really wanted to give the guests a win to celebrate but being on the podium was still great. Hopefully we can fight for both wins next time out at Oulton!”
Photo Credit: Simon Paice