James Dorlin converted pole position in race one of the Renault UK Clio Cup at Donington Park to victory in a hard fought drive to the top step of the podium.
Dorlin in his Westbourne Motorsport Clio actually dropped to second at the first corner after being passed by Westbourne team-mate James Colburn who had made a stellar start from fourth on the grid.
WDE Motorsports driver Paul Rivett who was leading the drivers championship as the series headed to Donington had a high speed smash into the barriers on the first lap after losing control of his Clio through the Craner Curves. Lee Pattison also of the WDE fold subsequently went into the gravel at the Old Hairpin before the safety car was called upon due to Jade Edwards stopping her MRM Racing Clio at Coppice due to steering damage.
At the restart, Colburn had no reply to the speedy Dorlin and he overtook his team-mate to take the lead of the race.
Following this, Dorlin started to open up a sizeable gap between himself and second. Colburn had no pace to be able to make up time and therefore had to defend his position valiantly against Team Pyro drivers Daniel Rowbottom in third and Jack McCarthy in fourth.
Colburn however wasn’t defending to the book and a five-second time penalty was handed over to him at race end due to track limit infringements. This meant he had dropped to fourth overall promoting Rowbottom to second and McCarthy onto the podium.
Brett Lidsey achieved a personal best fifth place finish at the flag and Team Pyro’s Max Coates, winner of race two at Brands Hatch, inheirited the championship lead after a sixth place finish and Rivett’s retirement on the first lap.
Following this race, all eyes were on the mechanics of WDE Motorsport to see if they could repair Paul Rivett’s heavily damaged car in time for the second race of the day.