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Salkeld At The Double With G40 Cup Victories In Zandvoort

9th July 2019 • Simon Paice

Chris Salkeld took a dream double victory in the Ginetta G40 Cup as the championship competed as part of the British Race Festival at Zandvoort in Holland this past weekend (06/07 June), while a win for Rob Keogh moved him into the championship lead.

Salkeld (Assetto Motorsport) hit the ground running in Holland with the fastest time in each of Friday’s two official free practice sessions, and he went on to replicate that performance in qualifying the next day to record his first two pole positions in the championship.

It was the usual suspects at the front of the pack as Keogh (W2R Motorsport), Alistair Barclay (SVG Motorsport) and Daniel Morris (Quattro Motorsport) completed the top four in qualifying, and their thrilling battle at the front of the pack continued across the weekend.

The fight for the opening race win became a straight duel between Salkeld and Keogh, with the latter hoping to draw on his experience at the circuit having won there in the championship’s last visit in 2017. On this occasion it wasn’t to be though as Salkeld held him off for victory. 

The championship leader heading into the weekend, Barclay was set for a podium finish in third when he suffered a late retirement. This promoted Morris to the final place in the top three, while Jimmy Thomson (W2R Motorsport) rose two positions through the race to fourth.

Martin Wills (Assetto Motorsport) converted the class pole position into victory in the Chairmans Cup, having finished a season’s best fifth overall, while Ian Duggan (Fox Motorsport) and Mike West (Assetto Motorsport) followed him home to complete the class podium.

A close fought midfield battle had resulted in less than three seconds splitting five drivers at the end of the race, with Duggan and West leading a pack that also included Bill Forbes (Quattro Motorsport), Roy Alderslade (W2R Motorsport) and Lee Goldsmith (Assetto Motorsport).

The first of two races on Sunday saw a similar story at the front of the field as Keogh aimed to dethrone Salkeld. The Ginetta Racing Drivers Club graduate edged clear of his experienced rival though and brought his Ginetta G40 home five seconds clear for his third win in a row.

Aiming to bounce back from his race one disappointment, Barclay initially ran third but lost ground on lap two. Morris took control of the final podium position and held it to the chequered flag, with Thomson picking up another fourth place finish ahead of Barclay.

Completing the top six overall on his way to a dominant Chairmans Cup win was Alderslade, who finished over 16 seconds clear of his closest class rival Wills. Splitting them in the overall results was Forbes, while Duggan completed the class podium ahead of West. 

It proved to be third time lucky for Keogh in the final race of the weekend, as he got ahead of Salkeld on the opening lap and held the lead throughout for his 20th win in the series. That capped off a landmark weekend in which the 2015 champion also recorded his 50th podium finish in race one.

Salkeld finished up just half a second adrift as he recorded his fifth consecutive top two result, while Morris ensured it was the same three drivers on the podium in each race as he picked up his eighth piece of G40 Cup silverware for the season so far.

Barclay took his best result of the weekend in fourth ahead of Alderslade, who triumphed in the Chairmans Cup for the seventh time this season to extend his lead atop the class standings. Thomson was sixth meanwhile, continuing a consistent run of nine top six finishes in the 11 races so far.

Duggan completed a Chairmans Cup podium hat-trick for the weekend in second position, while Julian Wantling (Assetto Motorsport) graced the podium for the fourth time this season. Behind, Forbes and Goldsmith rounded out the top ten.

SF Racing’s Gary Wager and Shawn Fleming headed to Zandvoort having competed alongside Keogh in the G40 Cup’s last outing in 2017. They used their experience to record best finishes of 11th and 13th respectively, while team-mate John Wall also took a high of 13th.

The penultimate meeting of the 2019 Ginetta G40 Cup season will take place at Brands Hatch in Kent on 3/4 August, with the season finale following six weeks’ later at Donington Park on 14/15 September.