Pepe Massot enjoyed the best outing of his debut car racing season so far during Rounds Seven and Eight of the 2012 Ginetta Junior Championship at Oulton Park, the Spaniard picking up a fantastic double podium with Hillspeed.
The 16 year old showed his potential from the off, going third fastest during Friday testing before putting himself on the front row in qualifying with the second best time of the session, comfortably the fastest rookie in both sessions.
The opening race began perfectly for the Barcelona-born youngster, a brilliant getaway seeing him get around the outside of the pole-sitter Charlie Robertson to take the lead. Massot led the opening few laps, before successfully negotiating a safety car period to remain in the lead.
The Spaniard slipped to second on lap eight when Irishman Niall Murray got through into Knickerbrook, but Massot drove well to keep second place until the end, a repeat of his seasons-best result from Donington Park.
Sunday's race began with Massot slotting into second behind Robertson, however on the second lap, a late passing attempt by Harry Woodhead forced both drivers wide, with the contact damaging Massot's steering.
Massot slipped to fifth, however a few laps the later the red flag was brought out after a heavy incident for a rival. A new six lap race began with a great getaway for Massot seeing him take the lead into the first corner, however the steering issues meant he was demoted to fourth soon after.
Fighting back to try and get back on the podium, Massot grabbed third from Robertson with a smart cut-back at the hairpin. The duo ran side by side over the hill and as they braked for the chicane, contact between the two sent Robertson off track. Managing to stay on track, Massot closed on the tail of the top two, but had to settle for third, just 0.4s shy of the race victory.
Hillspeed's Team Principal Richard Ollerenshaw said: “It's been an outstanding weekend for Pepe, his first ever visit to Oulton Park. He's been totally focused throughout and the first race on Saturday was the first time he'd driven the circuit in the dry, taking second was a true credit to his ability.
“We felt we could really challenge for a win in race two but needless contact at the hairpin from [Harry] Woodhead, over the grass on the inside, damaged Pepe's steering and so after the re-start we knew he'd be heavily compromised. To come away with third though was superb as he showed a lot of determination to bring a damaged car through to another podium finish.”