James Kellett made three wins in the last six races in the Ginetta Junior Championship with a hard-fought victory in Round Fourteen at Knockhill.
Kellett enjoyed a race-long duel with team-mate Lando Norris around the undulating Fife circuit, with Norris following him across the line for the fourth one-two finish and sixth win in the last six races for the HHC Motorsport stablemates.
A good start for pole-sitter Kellett saw him lead the field around the opening lap, but Norris kept with him throughout and a great run out of the hairpin at the end of the lap allowed the rookie to pass his more experienced team-mate for the lead.
Norris held the advantage for a couple of laps before a good run through Clarks on lap four gave Kellett the momentum to dive past Norris at the hairpin to regain the advantage.
That pass briefly allowed JHR Developments pairing Jamie Chadwick and Senna Proctor to enter the fray and make it four for the lead, but the HHC runners soon shrugged them off and resumed their fight.
The front two traded fastest laps between themselves as the race headed towards its conclusion, and despite his best efforts, Norris couldn’t forge an opportunity to pass. Kellett eventually crossed the line 0.816 seconds ahead for victory, his seventh top two finish in the last eight races.
“It was a tough race,” said Kellett. “I was able to get a jump on Lando from the start but he managed to get me back at the hairpin. I stayed behind him for a couple of laps and then got past him at the hairpin. I was able to pull away a little and keep the lead from there for the win.”
Chadwick ran third throughout the race in her JHR-prepared G40 Junior, with the position only looking under threat around mid-distance when team-mate Proctor sat on her tail.
Unfortunately for Proctor, who had gained fourth with a great pass on championship leader Mitchell at the hairpin on lap two, a mistake at McIntyre led to a long run across the grass and gravel, ending with a spin at the chicane.
With a massive gap to the pack behind, and no chance of closing back onto the tail of the front two, that gave Chadwick a comfortable run to the flag for her third podium finish of the season.
Proctor’s misfortune promoted Ryan Hadfield to fourth, the R&J Motorsport driver having passed Mitchell on lap three, with Mitchell and fellow JHR driver Dan Zelos eventually rounding out the top six after a close three way scrap throughout the race.
A great race for Jonathan Hadfield saw him finish seventh from thirteenth on the grid ahead of Jack Rawles, Ben Pearson and Matt Chapman, the latter taking his eighth top ten finish of the season from seventeenth on the grid.
Alex Sedgwick took eleventh ahead of Lewis Brown and Jamie Caroline, with the cars from fourth to thirteenth remarkably separated by just over three seconds at the chequered flag.
Proctor recovered to fourteenth ahead of William Taylforth, who dropped down the order after a couple of off-track moments, while Billy Monger completed the finishers behind Flashman Finneran after an unfortunate spin whilst running tenth.
Provisional Ginetta Junior Championship Standings (After Rd.14 of 20):
1. Jack Mitchell – JHR Developments – 388pts
2. James Kellett – HHC Motorsport – 312pts
3. Lando Norris – HHC Motorsport – 305pts
4. Ryan Hadfield – R&J Motorsport – 270pts
5. Dan Zelos – JHR Developments – 247pts
6. Ben Pearson – R&J Motorsport – 224pts
7. Jamie Chadwick – JHR Developments – 206pts
8. Jamie Caroline – Total Control Racing – 187pts
9. Jack Rawles – Tollbar Racing – 168pts
10. Alex Sedgwick – JHR Developments – 166pts