1st July 2019

Martin Rules At Oulton Park With Double Michelin Ginetta Junior Championship Victory

Will Martin has brought the first half of the 2019 Michelin Ginetta Junior Championship season to a close with a pair of race wins at Oulton Park this past weekend (29/30 June).

Martin (Richardson Racing) headed into the meeting as one of the in-form drivers in the series with race wins at each of the last two weekends at Thruxton and Croft, and he continued his positive run of form with his first pole positions in the series during qualifying on Saturday.

James Hedley (Elite Motorsport) took second for both races, making it six consecutive front row starts for the championship leader, while Lorcan Hanafin (Douglas Motorsport) finished third on the timesheets ahead of the quickest rookie Casper Stevenson (Richardson Racing).

Both races followed on Sunday, with the opener televised live on ITV4. A fascinating four-car battle developed at the front of the field, with Martin having to fend off Hedley, Stevenson and Hanafin – the last two having switched positions at the start of the lap.

Less than a second split the top four at the finish, with a faultless defensive drive from Martin seeing him keep his pursuers at bay to record the victory. Hedley came home in second, while after swapping the position a couple of times, Stevenson took the rookie win in third ahead of Hanafin.

Ethan Hawkey (Total Control Racing) posted the fastest lap of the race as he closed on the leading pack in fifth overall, while Josh Rattican (R Racing) equalled his best result of the season so far in sixth overall and second of the rookie contingent.

A fantastic three-way battle raged behind over seventh, with Tom Emson (Elite Motorsport) emerging in front ahead of the final rookie podium finisher Roman Bilinski (Alistair Rushforth Motorsport) and Joel Pearson (Elite Motorsport).

Daniel Gale (Total Control Racing) impressively rose from 19th on the grid to his first top ten result of the campaign  ahead of Zak O’Sullivan (In2 Racing), Freddie Tomlinson (Douglas Motorsport) and Ginetta Junior Scholar Ethan Brooks (Total Control Racing).

The second race on Sunday evening unfortunately proved to be a truncated encounter, with a pair of safety car periods leading to only two racing laps. Martin led the way throughout the encounter to complete his double for the weekend and make it four wins for the season so far.

Hedley initially slipped back to third prior to the first pause in action, but he got back ahead of Hanafin when the action resumed to take second at the finish. That continues his remarkable record of finishing off the podium just once in the ten races so far this season. 

 Stevenson picked up his fourth consecutive outright podium finish in third, and with it his third rookie class victory on the bounce. Hanafin settled for fourth at the finish, while Pearson picked up his best finish in the championship to date with fifth ahead of Rattican.

Those two completed the rookie rostrum, with O’Sullivan and Theo Edgerton (Total Control Racing) just missing out. Gus Burton (Douglas Motorsport) bounced back from a difficult first race with ninth, as Hawkey rounded out the top ten.

After each taking their seasons’ best qualifying results, Ben Kasperczak (Privateer) and Bailey Voisin (Douglas Motorsport) went home with top 12 finishes ahead of a group that included Premiership Academy Racing dup Ben O’Hare and Molly Dodd, plus Haytham Qarajouli (Total Control Racing).

The 2019 Michelin Ginetta Junior Championship now heads into a five week summer break, with the action resuming at Snetterton in Norfolk on 03/04 August.


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