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Preview: Ginetta Racing Drivers Club, Round One, Snetterton

14th May 2019 • Simon Paice

The Ginetta Racing Drivers Club provides a perfect platform to start in motor racing and a grid of new drivers are ready to embark on their debut season.

The Ginetta Racing Drivers Club (GRDC) is an all-inclusive package designed for drivers who are brand new to circuit racing, with every driver having the same level of track experience. The GRDC offers trackdays, ARDS tests, a sprint challenge and eight close, competitive races.

The class of 2019 features a diverse range of entrants, who come from across the UK with different backgrounds and occupations. What unites them though is their love of motorsport and excitement to tackle the opening rounds this weekend at Snetterton.

Follow in the footsteps of 2018’s leading driver James Crawshaw, Michael Kidson enters the GRDC as the latest winner of the want2race scholarship. The London based racer beat over 200 other drivers to win a fully-funded season in the championship.

Two drivers enter the series with experience in different motorsport disciplines. Birmingham based businessman Nigel Fox is moving from gravel to tarmac after a number of years in rallying, while Chris Threadgill swaps two wheels for four as a former factory motorcycle racer.

Toby Twice meanwhile has experience going fast too in his job as a high speed train driver. He combined that with some karting competition last year and was crowned Buckmore Park’s Driver’s Driver of the Year, an award previously won by two-time Ginetta champion Michael Crees.

Bringing some youthful exuberance to the grid will be Italian Ignazio Zanon, who will combine his racing with studies in Business and Management at the University of Surrey, London accountant Harry Mangion, son of experienced GT racer Peter, and Wales based Harry Ormerod.

After karting as a teenager, Mark Mandeville has been itching to get back into competitive race action and will be “realising a lifelong ambition” as he does so this year. Likewise, Mark Allin has been pondering a transition to race competition for a while and is finally taking the plunge.

Scotsman Neil Wallace lists his favourite circuit as Snetterton, so what better place to start his motorsport journey, while Mark Sansom enjoyed an exploratory outing in the series at Brands Hatch last season and returns for a first full campaign.

The 16 car entry for this weekend’s season opener is completed by Mark Lee, Peter Dilnot, Chris White, Paulo Scripo and Craig Cornick, with some competitive action anticipated throughout the order as they compete in their identical road-legal Ginetta G40s.

Keep up to date with all the action on social media, @GinettaCars.