Barker Dominates With Rockingham Double

by Simon Paice

Ben Barker has made it four wins in a row in the Porsche Carrera Cup GB with a double win at Rockingham, his utter domination of Rounds 15 and 16 moving him up to second in the championship.

Parr Motorsport’s Barker, who qualified on pole for both encounters, led the opening race from start to finish, comfortably leading Juta Racing’s Jonas Gelzinis, who ran second throughout.

Rory Butcher ran third early on, but a mistake at Brook Chicane on lap four saw him fall down to fifth behind Michael Meadows and Andy Meyrick. This left him at the front of a five car train fighting for the fifth place, Butcher pursued by James Sutton, the reigning champion making his first appearance of the season, Daniel Lloyd, Sam Tordoff and Richard Plant.

Butcher drove well to hold them off until the end to secure fifth, while on the penultimate lap, Lloyd dived up the inside of Sutton at Deene, with contact between the two spinning Sutton round, dropping him three places to ninth. Lloyd recovered to take sixth ahead of Plant and Tordoff, though was later given a 16 second penalty to demote him to ninth behind Sutton.

Derek Pierce took the Pro-Am 1 win, with a great fight for second in class going the way of Oly Mortimer. The GT Marques driver had held second early on, before falling behind Victor Jimenez and Ahmad Al Harthy, however contact between those two, resulting in Al Harthy’s retirement, promoted Mortimer back into second.

Barker produced another lights to flag victory in the day’s second race, which took place in treacherous conditions after severe rainfall. After an early safety car, caused by contact between Lloyd and Meyrick on the opening lap that left them both stranded at Deene, Barker comfortably led the entire race to complete a sensational weekend.

A great start for Butcher saw him leapfrog championship leader Meadows for second and the Scotsman held the spot throughout, with Meadows completing the podium to maintain his healthy championship lead.

The main action came in the battle for fourth, with Gelzinis holding it early on. After fending off Sutton for a number of laps, the Lithuanian eventually succumbed to the former double champion on lap seven, with Tordoff following him past.

As Gelzinis fell away with a broken splitter, eventually finishing eighth, Tordoff worked his way past Sutton on lap twelve to take fourth, with Sutton finishing fifth ahead of Plant. Seventh overall, taking the Pro-Am 1 class win, was Al Harthy, with Jimenez and Mortimer completing the class podium.

In Pro-Am 2, Will Goff took both class wins, by virtue of the fact he was the only entrant in the class.


2012 Porsche Carrera Cup GB Championship Standings (After Rd. 16):

1. Michael Meadows – 271pts

2. Ben Barker – 217pts

3. Sam Tordoff – 215pts

4. Jonas Gelzinis – 210pts

5. Rory Butcher – 196pts

6. Daniel Lloyd – 175pts

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