It’s been a little while since my introduction blog just before my season started at Oulton Park! And it seems ages ago! The past month has been quite spaced out but everything that has happened, it has happened very quickly, keeping me busy!
Starting with Oulton Park way back at the end of March. The weekend format gave us 3 sessions on the Friday testing, and a very busy Saturday with qualifying and 3 races in one day!
Friday Practice went well in the end, running on extremely old tires the first session was all about getting to grips with the car on the circuit. The second session I ended up in the Shell Hairpin Gravel pretty fast which ended our session early. It was a shame as without proper pre season running every minute of track time would be crucial. We opted for new tires in the final session so I knew what to expect on my new set on Saturday. We were bang on the pace, which was very encouraging going into quali on Saturday.
I was determined to start the season with a bang and show the more experienced guys that I meant business this year! Qualifying did just that. After running P1 midway through the session I was just piped to both poles but even though I was disappointed to be P2 for the first 2 races I was up the sharp end and ahead of most of the preseason favorites.
Race day was a day of could have beens. Race 1 was ruined at the first corner after a bit of over confidence and inexperience on cold tires caused me to spin to last. However, with the red mist well and truly set I made my way from 25th to 6th in 8 laps! It was a fun drive to look back on, much of the time over taking more than 1 car into corners, however it wasn’t the result we were looking for. Again our pace was rapid.
The second race was a bit uneventful as I lost a bit of confidence from the first race, running 3rd for the majority of the race. With a very nervous car I lost 3rd on the last lap which was very disappointing.
Going into the final race of the day I didn’t have much expectation due to the day being less than what I had expected… Starting 4th I got the jump into 3rd at the start and straight into 2nd by the end of lap 1 chasing down the leader. The car felt great, I was more relaxed which meant I was in a position to contest for the lead which I took into cascades early on. I held the lead until 3 laps from the end when I was muscled out through Lodge loosing the lead. Defending 2nd I lost some ground and ultimately lost the car on the final corner and finished 4th.
I haven’t felt that upset and disappointed with myself for a long time and it took a while to convince myself it’s a long championship and nothing is over yet! I certainly made an impact at the first meeting, some for the right reasons, and some for the wrong. Either way I like to think I made my mark! I know what to do for the next race to achieve my goals! I am P4 in the championship now with some work to do… the challenge only makes me work harder ;)
A massive thanks to everyone who is making this season happen. Nationwide Driver Supply, Paul White, Scuderia Vittoria, Podium PR, and my Dad! I hope to repay you all with 3 solid results at Rockingham! Keep an eye out for the blue #21 NDS Ginetta!
Goodbye for now!