Jack Barlow endured an “eventful weekend” as he made his Dunlop MSA Formula Ford debut at Brands Hatch in front of a capacity crowd.
A frontrunner in the Friday practice sessions, Barlow looked back over the weekend and blamed his below-par qualifying performance as the start of his problems which were further added to when he stalled at the start of Sunday’s race.
“I definitely need to brush up my qualifying and starts, as that’s where it went wrong for me.” said the 18-year old.
Starting from seventh on the grid after qualifying just eight-tenths of a second from pole position Barlow blamed position loss on the opening lap on his lack of experience in getting the single seater off the line.
“I didn’t get the best of starts,” he said . “I hadn’t even had the chance to practice a start before the race, so I dropped back and had to pick my way through the traffic.”
Barlow battled valiantly to make his way in to fourth place before setting his sights on Sam Brabham, “I got up to behind Sam, who really put up a fight and did a great job of defending, but he left the door open going into Druids (corner) and that was my opportunity to stick it down his inside.” the pressure on Barlow would be eased when Brabham tangled with another driver behind him.
With third place in the opening race of the weekend he compounded his performance with a solid fifth place before putting in a very strong performance to finish just off the podium in Sunday’s race.
The result on Sunday was made even more impressive after the Jamun driver stalled on the grid, thankfully the field avoided collecting him and his engine would spark in to action.
“You couldn’t see on the TV that I put in some proper, hairy moves!” said Barlow after the race. “I passed two cars going into Paddock Hill Bend and went round the outside of James Abbott at Druids.”
After the race he was congratulated by fans who had just witnessed his performance in the race. “People were coming up to me and saying ‘Were you in the red car? Oh man, you were awesome!’ and things like that. My team was delighted and even people from other teams were praising me for my pace and over-taking skills but I was just frustrated that I fluffed my start.”
Barlow heads in to the next race at Donington Park in fourth place and will be looking to make the most of the preperation time in practicing his starts.