Charlie Eastwood swept across the line after twenty-three laps of intense competition to claim his first win of the 2017 Porsche Carrera Cup GB season. History will show he held a scant two second gap to the man who would stand directly below him on the rostrum on Saturday at Donington Park. In truth the gap was slightly less. Occupying second position at the flag was Dino Zamparelli’s JTR machine…
Said twenty-three laps began with Eastwood struggling to shake off a fired up Lewis Plato (JTR), keen to capitalise on his second position grid slot. After fending off the advances of the former British GT driver, Eastwood pulled the metaphorical pin and a series of blistering lap-times secured him a safe lead.
Plato then fell back into the clutches of Zamparelli, and Redline Racing man Tom Oliphant joined the orderly line tussling for two podium positions. Whilst Oliphant would fall back into the chasing pack, ultimately finishing ninth (seventh after post-race penalties – see below), Zamparelli made a daring move around the outside of his team-mate at Redgate to snatch second.
Meanwhile a resurgent Dan Cammish (Redline), recovering from a qualifying incident involving Rupert Martin (Team Parker Racing – Pro-Am2), had stormed from tenth on the grid and now found himself attacking Plato. Ultimately Cammish’s charging drive would be rewarded with a podium, Plato succumbing just before Hollywood in the closing stages of the race.
Third a tremendous reward for a scything drive through the Pro classification. However, both Zamparelli and Plato were about to have their days somewhat ruined. Both JTR machines were excluded post race for technical infringements, giving Redline Racing a one-two result. Occupying second position in the history books, Dan Cammish.
Arguably more noteworthy was the fact said judicial orders promoted a consistent Tom Wrigley from fifth to the podium for In2Racing, a brilliant result and just reward after a Brands Hatch weekend blighted by misfortune.
JTR’s day was somewhat salvaged by Tio Ellinas, an impressive fifth post his team-mate’s removal from the history books. Euan McKay (Redline) claimed a career best fourth, with brother Dan rounding out the top half-dozen.
More good news for the In2Racing squad came in Pro-Am2, were Peter Kyle-Henney was able to convert his evident advantage into an impressive class win. SlideSports, another team blighted by Brands Hatch bad-luck, had something to smile about with David Fairbrother second in class, and Peter Parsons back on the PA2 podium in his The Car Loan Centre machine.
Pro-Am1 produced a brilliant tussle, but Alex Martin (Team Parker Racing) found his slight pace advantage to his ultimate detriment as an altercation within the Pro ranks left him wrong footed and allowed Peter Jennings (G-Cat Racing) to claim the class victory. Local driver Justin Sherwood (Team Parker Racing) rounded out the podium.
Dan Cammish faces an even harder prospect for the second Porsche Carrera Cup GB race at Donington Park, starting twentieth of the twenty-two runners for tomorrow’s race. However, he will enjoy an extra ten laps in which to chase down another podium result. Charlie Eastwood meanwhile, will face another ten laps of tyre management and onslaught from the rapid JTR boys in the Midlands. Race one produced some fantastic on track tussles, race two looks set to provide even more of the same.
Full results from the second Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship and TOCA support meeting can be found here.