As the rain clouds closed in it was one a piece for the two top championship contenders as the qualifying for the Porsche Carrera Cup GB at Snetterton got under way.
Despite the session remaining dry there was plenty of action as the session was red flagged twice, the result of the 30 minute session saw six drivers come away with pole positions across the board, with the second fastest time from each driver deciding the grid for the second race.
Michael Caine would lead the way as he took pole position for Round 11, but would be bitterly disappointed not to secure the fastest time for Round 12 after a misunderstanding with Glynn Geddie followed by the too red flags whilst on laps which would have seen him fastest. “I felt that we’d got the pace for two poles and that would have proved a point,” said Caine. “We’ve done everything right so far this weekend.”
Championship leader Tim Harvey admitted that his rival’s performance today was impressive. “Michael had the pace on me today. The time he set is very, very quick,” said Harvey. The Oxford based driver would also praise the new assembly system which released the cars for qualifying in the order they finished in Friday testing. “It worked very well. We all got a good series of clean laps at the start of qualifying,” he said.
Ex-BTCC racer Stephen Jelley was annoyed not to have done better despite qualifying third for both races.”I’m a bit frustrated,” admitted Jelley. “P3 is okay, but not to be half a second off Michael’s best time.”
Carrera Cup Scholar Michael Meadows performed well as he took a well deserved fourth place after being on pace on Friday. Geddie took fifth fastest of the Pro drivers for both races but was edged out by top Pro-am1 driver Jonas Gelzinis for round 11 as he continued his impressive run of quickly learning tracks he’s never raced on. “I didn’t make a good lap on my first set of tyres,” said Gelzinis.
Despite Gelzinis expecting to be way down the grid for Round 12 he only dropped behind rival Ollie Jackson and will start from an overall seventh on the grid. Jackson meanwhile was glad to have got through the session without any damage despite a high-speed spin at Riches after Andrew Shelley‘s Red Line Racing Porsche dropped coolant on track. “That was a huge scare,” said Jackson who came to rest just feet from the barriers.
Following Jackson’s high-speed off Glenn McMenamin and George Brewster followed the youngster spinning in to the gravel at the same time, needless to say the session was red flagged while the marshalls dealt with the coolant.
Tony Gilham would take third place in Pro-am1 after admitting he was lucky to be at Snetterton after reaching the bottom of his budget pot. Thankfully for the #34 driver Morgan Forbes stepped in after the team worked hard on securing a sponsorship deal. “Without their support our season was over,” admitted Gilham. Ahamad Al Harthy took fourth place in pro-am1.
Despite his spin in to the gravel McMenamin managed to leap ahead of Paul Mace for the Pro-am2 pole for round 11 but couldn’t find the pace for a second lap as he dropped back to third. Mace would line up ahead of him with George Richardson following in second for round 12. “I got one golden lap in and then before I knew it I was off the track,” said McMenamin. “I expected to go quicker on the second run, but red flags and the slippery track ruined that,” said Mace.