Tom Roche, Carl Boardley and Harry King took a victory apiece in the Michelin Ginetta GT4 Supercup at Rockingham, while Charlie Ladell secured a hat-trick of top four finishes to stay at the top of the championship standings.
It was Roche who led the way in qualifying for his first pole position of the season ahead of King and Fender, the latter continuing his impressive record of qualifying in the top three in five of the six sessions so far.
Title contenders Ladell and Boardley would start the opening race from fourth and sixth respectively, with the former making progress into the podium places, while Boardley battled with Andrew Gordon-Colebrooke.
Neither could tackle the top two though, with Roche fending off a late bid from King to pick up a second win of the year; King and Ladell completing the podium after Fender dropped out of top three contention early on.
Gordon-Colebrooke kept Boardley at bay to record his best finish of the season so far with fourth, while Fender rounded out the top six ahead of Reece Somerfield and Jac Constable, the latter recording the fastest lap of the race.
That result set the grid for race two, though a slow start for poleman Roche on a damp surface opened the door for King to seize the early advantage, however his lead was short-lived too as Ladell muscled past at Yentwood.
While the championship leader went on to lead on the road through to the chequered flag, a ten second time penalty for being out of position at the start meant he would drop out of the podium positions and finish fourth.
Inheriting the victory after a great drive was Boardley, who picked off Century Motorsport pair Fender and Gordon-Colebrooke in the early stages before passing King on lap six at Pif Paf for second and ultimately the win.
King and Roche completed the rostrum, with Ladell taking fourth ahead of Fender. Gordon-Colebrooke would slip back to ninth in between Somerfield and Constable, while Carl Shield’s difficult weekend continued in a lowly fourteenth.
Ladell’s time penalty would actually benefit him when it came to the reverse grid draw for race two, with the Rob Boston Racing put onto pole position. He led away, while King picked off Roche for second into the Deene hairpin for the first time.
King would grab the lead from Ladell at the same corner on lap five and the top three looked set to finish in that order until a miscalculated move from Roche into Deene as he tried to pass Ladell resulting in his going straight into the tyre barriers and out of the race.
As King led home Ladell to the finish, Fender would have to stave off late pressure from Shield and Gordon-Colebrooke for the final podium position, with his hold of the spot confirmed on the final lap as his rivals came to blows at Yentwood.
That opened the door for Boardley to grab fourth ahead of Somerfield, with Shield dropping back to seventh ahead of Constable, while Gordon-Colebrooke would unfortunately be left stranded in the gravel trap.
In the AM class, it was another standout weekend for points leader Michael Crees. From a fifth class pole position in six sessions, the first year Supercup driver held off experienced rival Colin White for a lights-to-flag victory in the opening race.
White got his own back in race two as he held off race-long pressure from Crees for the win, but it swung back in Crees’ favour in the final reverse grid encounter as he fought from third on the grid to victory from Jack Minshaw and White.
Minshaw had enjoyed a great tussle with David Brooks in the first race, the latter emerging ahead for his third podium of the season and what would turn out to be his best result with two tough races following, while Minshaw was back on the podium in race two.
Lee Frost and Alex Taylor came away with best of a pair of fourth and fifth place finishes from the weekend respectively, while Lucky Khera got into the top six in race two but unfortunately joined Brooks in retirement in the final encounter.
The weekend’s results mean Ladell holds a twenty point lead over Boardley atop the Pro standings with six races remaining, while King has overtaken Roche for third in the points, though he lies over 140 points adrift of the championship leader.
In the AM class, Crees’ seventh and eighth wins of the year has put him 22 points ahead of White, with Minshaw still in contention 35 points further back as the championship heads to Silverstone next on September 15/16.
Full championship standings can be found here: https://www.tsl-timing.com/file/?f=TOCA/2018/183203ptsg50.pdf
All race results from Rockingham are here: https://www.tsl-timing.com/file/?f=TOCA/2018/183203g50.pdf