Champion Palmer Dominates Clio Cup Series Season Opener


Credit: Jakob Ebrey Photography

Ben Palmer stormed to a dominant pair of victories to begin his 2018 Michelin Clio Cup Series title defence in style in the opening rounds at Silverstone.

The reigning champion wouldn’t be headed throughout the weekend, kicking off in style by topping the timesheets in qualifying by six tenths of a second.

Palmer would go on to take a pair of lights-to-flag victories, the most impressive coming in race one as he took the win by nearly twenty seconds.

Best of the rest in that one would be Palmer’s team-mate Simon Freeman, while John Hamilton impressively rose from from sixth to third.

Hamilton would go one better next time out, fighting his way up four positions to finish in second, with Freeman close behind the complete the podium.

Ben Colburn almost grabbed third however, finishing just a tenth of a second shy of Freeman to make up for a tough race one when he slipped to sixth.

Fourth in the opening race went the way of Tyler Lidsey, who was running third before losing out to Hamilton, with a series debutant Ronan Pearson fifth.

Pearson began race two from the front row after a standout qualifying performance, however he would take fifth again after holding off Lidsey.

Tony Verhulst took seventh in both, leading Finlay Robinson and Steve Williams on the opener, before contact left those two retiring from race two.

In the Road Series, reigning class champion Nic Harrison emulated Palmer in controlling proceedings throughout with a pair of victories.

James Joannou would recover from an exclusion from qualifying and then a spin in race one to take the first of a pair of second place finishes.

Completing the podium both times was Darren Geeraerts, with Sean Thomas in contention in race one before an accident ended his weekend prematurely.

The Michelin Clio Cup Series is next in action at Rockingham Motor Speedway on 14/15 April.