Serralles Avoids Opening Lap Fracas To Take Win

by Vince Pettit

Felix Serralles took his fifth win of the season for Fortec in the reverse-grid sprint race at Silverstone.

A frantic opening lap saw front row starters Pipo Derani and Jack Harvey clashing in to Brooklands, gifting the lead to Serralles as he took avoiding action, team-mate Alex Lynn remained hot on his tail while Harvey slipped to third. Derani would limp around to the pits but be forced to retire with damaged suspension.

“I was past him on the outside going into Brooklands,” said Harvey, “and he hit me in the sidepod and pushed me off. I was half a car length in front.”

Unfortunately for the British driver the stewards saw the incident differently and after studying video of the incident handed Harvey a 30-second penalty. The race wouldn’t get any better for him as he would be penalised with a five-place grid drop for the final race of the day after weaving to block Derani in a separate incident. The Carlin team have put in an appeal following the race and the results remain provisional.

With the first lap out of the way a three-car battle for victory emerged as Serralles struggled with the handling of his car. His battle was helped out by the battle behind with Lynn fending off the challenge from Harvey as he tried to find a way in to the lead.

Breaking point would come when Serralles almost lost control of his car after putting two wheels on the dirt, almost losing control. Lynn was forced in to a spin as he tried to avoid and as a result dropped to sixth place.

“It was a tough race.” Serralles explained, “Alex had a better car; I was struggling a bit with mine. I didn’t spin, I was just struggling with the car and there was nothing I could do at that point.”

“I saw Alex spinning back across the track and thought ‘Oh dear, I might collect him’ but I was able to avoid him.” said the chasing Harvey who would finish second on track but be demoted to tenth following the penalty.

Jazeman Jaafar who won the opening race of the weekend made a strong start from ninth on the grid to move up to sixth on the opening lap, followed by a pass on Pietro Fantin for fifth on the next lap. As Derani dropped out Jaafar moved up to fourth. By the end of the race Jaafar had moved up to a podium spot following Lynn’s spin.

 “The podium was my target; it was a hard fight on the same tyres I used yesterday but I got it and it’s important for the championship.” said Jaafar. The Malaysian would be promoted to second following Harvey’s penalty.

Fantin rounded out the final three following the penalties being applied, Rupert Svendsen-Cook followed with Lynn, Carlos Sainz and Hannes Van Asseldonk in tow. Geoff Urhahane, Nick McBride and Harry Tincknell would round out the top 10.

Pedro Pablo Calbimonte looked set for a win in the National class after moving in to the lead on the second lap but a trip off track on lap five gave Duvashen Padayachee a clear run to the flag with Spike Goddard taking second.

“I was putting pressure on Pedro and he made a mistake, ran on to the dirt out of Maggotts and spun. Compared to yesterday this was a much better race for me,” said Padayachee.

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