Scottish racing driver David Wagner starred during the final rounds of the 2011 Protyre Formula Renault BARC Championship at Silverstone, the MGR Motorsport driver taking a seasons best fourth place in the final race of the year, televised live on ITV4.
Despite it being Wagner's first event at the track, he secured a season's best fourth and third in qualifying. He looked set to convert it into a top five finish in the weekend's first race when he was given a drive through penalty for running off track, dropping him right down the field. He made amends in race two, enjoying a great battle with eventual champion Dino Zamparelli, getting lots of television coverage, on his way to fourth place.
Wagner said: “Silverstone was a fantastic weekend. During testing, we found a set-up that really suited my driving style and heading into qualifying I was expecting to be inside the top eight but after some really satisfying laps I secured fourth and third for the races.
“Race one was delayed by a red flag incident, the temperature dropped and I was getting quite a lot of understeer while challenging for third. On a couple of laps I ran wide and was given a drive through penalty for exceeding the track limits. It was a disappointing end to a promising race where I was fighting for the podium.
“I was determined to make up for it in race two. The first lap was quite challenging as I got pushed wide at the first corner and a few people got through. I was sure that once the race settled down, I could get into a rhythm and overtake those in front. I managed to pass Dino [Zamparelli] on the exit of Maggotts but spent the next seven laps battling with him and we lost ground to the leaders. I wasn't quite able to stay in front as he seemed to have a little bit more front end grip, but I was able to overtake Kourosh Khani and Archie Hamilton to finish fourth.”
MGR Motorsport's driver coach, Kelvin Burt said, “David has improved tremendously since the first race of the year at Donington Park. He had great qualifying sessions and would have scored two top five finishes if it hadn't been for a drive through penalty. His feedback on the handling of the car is helping him find a balance that allows him to drive faster. He showed that he is not intimidated when racing against more experienced drivers and his drive to fourth was fantastic to watch and earned him the majority of the TV coverage! I am very pleased for him.”
Reflecting on his year, Wagner concluded: “I am delighted to have secured my best result in the final race of the year. It shows that as a team, we are continually making progress and I think that at the start of next year, we will be very strong. I am very grateful to my sponsors Carrick Packaging, Biosafe Solutions, William Johnston, Nexus Internet and Nexus Packaging, because without them, I would not have been racing this year.”