2015 Sports 2000 Duratec Championship – Round 7 – Silverstone GP – 13th September
Entering the penultimate round at Silverstone I needed a 6th place or better to secure the championship so whilst going for the win was always on the cards, collecting points was the name of the game.
Qualifying was dry and with a new set of tyres the car felt fantastic and was particularly quick through the Maggotts / Becketts section of the track. When I pitted for some changes I was amazed to be told by Dad that I had done a low 2.08 which was inside the current lap record. Went out again to verify the changes but there was not enough time to get another lap in but the previous time was good enough for pole by 1.2 seconds from Michael Gibbons in second.
Although on the outside of the grid I was on the racing line and as the reds went out got a solid start and led comfortably into Copse. Michael was on my tail on the exit but not close enough to challenge into Maggots and a good run through meant I was able to consolidate my lead over the initial lap.
I started to pull a gap but on lap 4 someone had deposited oil starting from Stowe right through to sections of Luffield. I caught the oil going through Abbey and a massive slide made my rethink the pace I was going at! The issue with leading was that I was always going to hit the oil first so I backed off to make sure I didn’t hit any more the next lap and risk going off.
Michael of course had no ideas of backing off and seized his chance going through Abbey and Farm on the next lap and wrestled his way by into Village / The Loop section.
The next lap round I got a much better run out of the slow loop section and challenged down the Wellington straight. I pulled out of the slipstream to the inside but some robust defending kept me behind so I would have to wait.
Michael was pushing to break the tow and I was treated to some spectacular car control with 4 wheel drifts through Abbey and Copse and some mega black line exits from the slower corners. I was able to stay in contention in the slip stream and as we hit back markers the gap ebbed and flowed but I was determined to stay in contention.
A couple of efforts on the start finish straight came to nothing but as we exited Luffield for what was the second to last time I got a fantastic exit and a great run on Michael who defended the inside into Woodcote but I had enough momentum to sweep to the outside and squeezed through on the outside down the straight and into Copse.
Caution to the wind and flat out through Maggots / Becketts saw a decent lead and then it was head down and try and build a gap. I hadn’t realised but it was the last lap and only when I exited Copse and saw the marshals waiving did I realise I had won.
Pole, Win, Fastest Lap, 2015 Champions!
Many thanks to Clive and Cindy at MCR for what is the second championship in a row. The car has been fast and reliable all year.
Thanks to Alan, Tina and all at ADI Group for their fantastic support over the season.
Thanks to Dad, Ken, Richard, Anthony for all the car prep and trackside support.