We were to be racing his MG ZR 160 in Class C – what was basically the middle class, with some cars quicker than us and others slower.
I drove the car for the first time on Friday afternoon for 3 laps, and quickly found the car had tons of grip and was really fun to drive – but I still hadn’t really learned the car properly, obviously!
Qualifying – 17th (6th in class)
Early on Sunday, we headed out to our 25 minute qualifying session, Jack first, then it was my turn.
I managed to set a time just 0.2 shy of the quickest MG ZR 160, lining up 17th overall and 6th in class.
Looking at the lap times, we were very far away from the top 4 cars, so it looked like a very tough race in prospect if we wanted to move up the order!
50 Minute Race – 7th (2nd in class)
Jack started the race, and immediately had to take huge avoiding action as the pole man had stalled on the grid. Another car managed to make big contact with the stalled car and had a huge barrel roll down the straight. Jack did a great job to avoid getting involved, and we were safe, ready to take the restart.
This time all went safely, and Jack put in a great stint; 25 minutes later and we were running P5 – best MG ZR 160 but still with some work to do!
Then came the pit stop – with the Preptech guys doing a super job of getting Jack out and me into the car as quickly as possible, we’d gained some 20-25 seconds on the competition!
As I left the pits, I was now being shown the P4 board, then eventually P3 and soon after P2.
I did soon catch the class leader, who was significantly quicker than us down the straights, but much slower through the corners – so getting close enough to try a pass was a bit of a nightmare!
I did eventually manage to get past to take the class lead on the very last lap, around the outside of the historic version of Vale corner – and once the chequered flag came, we’d taken the win by just 0.2 seconds on the road!
Sadly we’d also picked up a 5 second penalty for running wide over the track limits during the race, so we were demoted back down to 2nd.
Still not a bad result at all, it originally looked like a top 5 might be an impossibility, let alone a challenge for class win! I’d also managed to set the fastest MG ZR 160 lap time in the race, having just about got used to the car!
Thank you again to Jack Roberts for letting me share the car and to Preptech for such a rapid pit stop!