Jack Mitchell made it four wins from four races in the 2014 Ginetta Junior Championship after holding off a race-long challenge from James Kellett to complete his Donington Park double.
Mitchell’s winning streak looked under threat early on from karting protégé Lando Norris, the quick-starting HHC Motorsport driver squeezing ahead of poleman Mitchell on the run to Redgate for the first time.
Ryan Hadfield attempted to get past Mitchell too around the outside of the first bend, but the R&J Motorsport man was shuffled back behind Kellett and Ben Pearson.
His brother Jonathan Hadfield was also in the wars, an attempted move from Jack Rawles into the Old Hairpin resulting in contact that spun both around, with the unfortunate Jamie Chadwick also spinning in avoidance.
A five car train quickly developed for lead, with Mitchell leading the charge to Norris. The championship leader made his move at Redgate at the start of lap three, with Norris getting caught out and shuffled back to fourth behind Kellett and Pearson.
Norris gained one place back at the end of the lap, getting a run on Pearson coming out of the chicane, forcing the R&J racer onto the grass to cement the place. Pearson dropped two more places later in the lap, a run wide at Coppice losing him ground to Hadfield and Jamie Caroline.
Ahead, Kellett’s charge for the lead looked to be over as he received a drive-through penalty for a jump start, but the HHC Motorsport racer proceeding to run on the rear bumper of Mitchell for a number of laps.
After running past the pits more than three times, Kellett received a black flag, eventually pulling out of the race at the end of the penultimate lap. This gave Mitchell a clear run to the flag over the final lap, the JHR Developments ace winning by a second.
“I had the confidence that I could catch [Lando] Norris early on, and I just had to spot where his weak spot was, which turned out to be the first corner,” Mitchell told TCF. “I’ve been quick into there all weekend, so knew I could put it up the inside when he left the door open.
“I was hoping Lando would stay behind and battle with James [Kellett] for a bit, but he managed to get straight ahead. He had the tow on me, so I had to defend my line throughout the race. Once he came in, the pressure was off.”
Norris finished second, while benefitting from Kellett’s demise to secure his maiden Ginetta Junior podium was Caroline. R&J pairing Ryan Hadfield and Pearson were next up, while producing a sensational drive from seventeenth on the grid to finish sixth was William Taylforth.
Jonathan Hadfield emerged from a great four-car battle in seventh ahead of Pedro Cardoso, Alex Sedgwick and Dan Zelos, the latter battling through superbly from nineteenth on the grid.
Full race results can be found here: http://tsl-timing.com/toca/2014/141603gij.pdf
2014 Ginetta Junior Championship Standings (After Rd.4 of 20):
1. Jack Mitchell – JHR Developments – 147pts
2. Ryan Hadfield – R&J Motorsport – 100pts
3. Lando Norris – HHC Motorsport – 89pts
4. Jonathan Hadfield – R&J Motorsport – 74pts
5. Ben Pearson – R&J Motorsport – 73pts
6. William Taylforth – HHC Motorsport – 60pts
7. Jamie Caroline – TCR – 59pts
8. James Kellett – HHC Motorsport – 58pts
9. Jack Rawles – Tollbar Racing – 54pts
10. Dan Zelos – JHR Deveopments – 47pts
11. Pedro Cardoso – Hillspeed – 38pts
12. Jamie Chadwick – JHR Developments – 36pts