Tom Gamble is the pace-setter in the Ginetta Junior Championship as the series prepares to Thruxton this weekend for what is sure to be a pair of high-octane, action-packed races around the fastest circuit in the UK.
Gamble stormed to the top of the standings with a sensational pair of breakthrough race victories last time out at Donington Park, with his current run of four consecutive podium finishes meaning he leads the way despite having suffered a retirement in the opening race of the campaign.
That means the JHR Developments racer’s lead at the top is only five points over Daniel Harper though, with the Northern Irishman having been the pace-setter for much of the Donington weekend for Douglas Motorsport with a hat-trick of pole positions and a first win of 2017.
Sebastian Priaulx had headed to Donington as the championship leader, however a nightmare trip to Leicestershire saw him drop to fifth in the standings – something he’ll be confident of bouncing back in style from on the circuit he took his maiden series podium at twelve months ago.
Tom Wood has quietly put together an impressive start to the campaign with three rostrum finishes in the five races so far and he’s sure to be in contention for a maiden race win this time out, as will his former team-mate Harry King who was in the podium mix at Thruxton last year.
Of the championship’s rookie contingent, one driver stood out from the rest at Donington, with Kiern Jewiss starring in the top three overall in qualifying before taking a pair of superb outright second place finishes, meaning a maiden race victory will be his next target.
Scott McKenna was another rookie talent to shine in Leicestershire with his maiden front row start and a pair of fourth place finishes, and he’ll be eager to get himself on the overall podium this weekend, as will Brands Hatch race-winner Harry Dyson.
Current Ginetta Junior scholar Adam Smalley has three class podium finishes to his name so far and will aim to add more to his tally in Hampshire this weekend, as will fellow Scholarship finalist Matt Luff, Ruben Del Sarte and the ever-improving Tom Canning.
The ultra-competitive nature of the Juniors has been proven by the fact that nineteen of the twenty drivers on the grid have taken overall top ten finishes this year, with the only one to miss out, Jordan Collard, sure to change that having been a top five finisher last season.
With the championship as close-fought as ever this season, anyone in the field could enjoy a standout performance at Thruxton this weekend, with Connor Grady, Charlie Digby, Greg Johnson, Luke Browning, Jenson Dineen, Keaton Samra and Finley Green hoping to spring a surprise.
Full championship standings ahead of the meeting can be found here: http://tsl-timing.com/file/?f=TOCA/2017/171503ptsgij.pdf