The title battle is heating up in the 2017 Ginetta Junior Championship, with just sixteen points separating Tom Gamble, Sebastian Priaulx and Daniel Harper atop the standings heading into the penultimate meeting of the season at Silverstone this weekend.
After the challenges of Kiern Jewiss and Tom Wood faltered at Rockingham last time out, it looks likely to be a three way fight for the honours across the final six races of the year, with the Silverstone triple-header followed by the season finale at Brands Hatch at the end of the month.
Gamble heads to the ‘home of British motor racing’ with a seven point lead over his former team-mate Priaulx, having regained the points lead with a fifth win of the season at Rockingham on his first outing with Elite Motorsport, having had to switch from JHR Developments.
Priaulx joined Gamble in having to find a new team, with a move to HHC Motorsport producing a podium hat-trick three weeks ago, and he’ll head to Silverstone in confident mood having taken a maiden win there last season as he aims to get back the points lead.
The in-form driver since the summer break has been Harper, with a double victory at Rockingham added to two successes at Snetterton moving the Douglas Motorsport ace from over eighty points back in the title race to just nine behind Priaulx.
For his team-mate Jewiss meanwhile, a difficult outing at Rockingham has dropped him 78 points back in the title hunt, though he remains one to watch having secured eleven podium finishes so far in his maiden campaign, including a victory at Knockhill.
Those successes have put Jewiss on the cusp of winning the 2017 Rookie Cup title, with the departure of Harry Dyson from the series meaning he only needs to worry about Adam Smalley, and to take the crown he needs to outscore him by just one point at Silverstone.
The strong recent form of Harper and Jewiss has also put Douglas Motorsport on the verge of the Teams title, with their current lead of 202 points over HHC Motorsport needing to stay at 199 points or more at the end of this weekend to win it with a weekend to spare.
Leading the challenge for HHC all season has been Wood. The second year contender shot into the title mix with a maiden win at Snetterton, however despite an impressive haul of eight podiums so far he sits 85 points adrift of Gamble as it stands.
Harry King was a double podium finisher at Silverstone last season and he’s determined to get back in the top three this weekend, while the ever-improving Jordan Collard has a maiden rostrum finish in his sights having finished fourth twice in the last four races.
In the Rookie class meanwhile, while Jewiss looks set to take the class title there are plenty of other drivers to look out for, with Ginetta scholar Smalley having taken class wins in each of the last three weekends, while Luke Browning took a maiden success at Rockingham.
Ruben Del Sarte was a first time winner at Knockhill, an accolade Tom Canning and Matt Luff will be determined to achieve by season’s end, while Louis Foster and Emily Linscott head to Silverstone aiming to get in contention after making their series debuts three weeks ago.
Isa Deen enters his fourth meeting with a top ten breakthrough within his sights, Keaton Samra will be hoping for a smooth return to the action for the first time since Croft, while Charlie Digby and Greg Johnson will also be aiming to end their campaigns on a high.
Full championship standings ahead of the meeting can be found here: http://tsl-timing.com/file/?f=TOCA/2017/173403ptsgij.pdf