Grantham-based Richardson Racing picked up a hat-trick of victories in the G50 class of the 2012 Michelin Ginetta GT Supercup in Rounds 7, 8 and 9 at Thruxton.
Mark Davies took two of the wins to increase his championship lead, while Louise Richardson stormed to her first victory of the season, both the G50 drivers securing triple class podiums over the weekend. In the main G55 class, Andrew Richardson was able to score points in all three races, but didn't pick up the podiums he desired.
With no pre-event testing at the track, Andrews first taste of Thruxton came in Saturday's wet qualifying session. Richardson qualified seventh, which he converted into a strong fourth place finish in the opening race. He repeated the result in race two, but there was to be disappointment in the final race of the weekend.
With the rain falling just before the race kicked off, the team were forced to quickly change his G55's dry set-up. This caused him to miss the start and begin from the pitlane, with his chances of a strong result then hit by a power steering failure. After a trip to the pits, Richardson ended the race twelfth overall and seventh in class.
Richardson said: “The positive thing is that I got three finishes but it's been a tough weekend. When it was dry in the first race, I was as quick as anyone but we hadn't run in the wet with this car and we missed a trick with the ride height that other teams knew about in the conditions.
“The second race was difficult and then for the third race, we'd planned to go with a dry set-up and then the rain returned. I had to start from the pits but the power steering belt broke and it was so tiring behind the wheel.
“I brought the car in but I was determined to pick up some points from the race and I decided to go back out on track. The car was so heavy round the corners and I couldn't relax for a second so I was exhausted at the end, but it was important to score.”
Huddersfield-based Davies qualified on pole for the G50 class and was the driver to beat throughout the first two races, leading both from lights to flag. In the final race, Davies kept with a dry set-up and it backfired for him, slipping out of the lead to end the race third, his third podium of the weekend extending his championship lead to 42 points.
Davies commented: “I've extended my lead again which is important for the championship. Race one was good and in race two, the car was perfect for the conditions although it was tricky with a lot of standing water on the track. We went with a dry set-up for race three which was the wrong call and I think I would have won again if we'd not taken the gamble. Oulton Park is next, which is the closest thing I have to a home circuit, and I'm looking forward to it.”
Louise made it a one-two for the team in qualifying by going second quickest, despite it being the first time she'd driven the car in the wet. The opening race saw her lose places at the start, before fighting back to take third in class, before she went one better in race two to cap off a Richardson Racing one-two.
It was the final race in which Louise would really shine, battling her way ahead of Mark early on with a brave move at Church in the tricky, wet conditions. She went on to drive away from the rest of the G50 field, challenging for an overall podium at one stage in fourth overall, before dropping back to fifth overall, but still comfortably the G50 winner.
Louise added: “I'm so, so happy! I hoped it would go well this weekend, but I didn't expect that much. To get three podiums, including my first win is just brilliant. In the final race, the car was absolutely amazing. I don't know what the team did to it, but it was absolutely mega.
“These points are important for me in the championship and hopefully my victory will help find the sponsors we need for Oulton Park, Croft and the rest of the season. We're still working on things and hopefully it will all come together.”