Richardson Racing impress with Junior podiums at Knockhill

The Richardson Racing team secured more silverware from two dramatic rounds of the Ginetta Junior Championship at Knockhill.

The Corby-based team headed for Scotland keen to maintain its title challenge, with a four-car entry of Luke Browning, James Taylor, Will Martin and Emily Linscott.

After a busy week leading up to the event, that included two days of testing, the team went into the race weekend itself optimistic about its chances on track, with Luke qualifying fourth for the opening race ahead of James in seventh and Will in 15th.

Emily was able to take part in qualifying after the team worked hard to repair her car after a brake issue led to a high-speed off in practice, although she admitted to lacking confidence as she secured 17th on the grid.

Rain on race day threw an added challenge into the mix and led to an action-packed opener, with Luke seeing his hopes of victory ended on the opening lap when he was tipped into a spin at Clarks.

Forced to pit to allow the team to check a handling issue on the car, he then rejoined the back of the field before producing an astonishing drive through the pack – lapping nearly a second quicker than anyone else en-route to fourth spot.

That left him just behind James who battled his way forwards towards the podium places before securing third spot two laps from home with an opportunistic move going into Butchers on Jonny Wilkinson. Will ended up with a solid P10 having worked his way through the order in impressive fashion whilst Emily took 14th as she continued to regain confidence behind the wheel.

Luke started the second race from fourth on the grid and fought his way ahead of title rival Adam Smalley on the fourth lap before the first of two Safety Car periods prevented him from challenging race leader Louis Foster.

He would end the weekend with a second place finish, whilst James fought up from ninth on the grid to cross the line in fifth overall as third best of the rookies.

Another solid run from Will saw him climb into the top ten before he was forced off track by rival Patrick Kibble whilst dicing for seventh spot, which resulted in him slipping back to twelfth on the final lap.

Emily meanwhile came from 17th on the grid to take 13th thanks to her strongest drive of the weekend.

Will Martin, #10 (Battle, East Sussex), said

“I’d say it’s been another successful weekend for me, particularly given that I missed one of the test days that others did in the lead up to the event. The wet conditions have been tricky and I had a lot to learn, but it’s been really enjoyable.

“I pushed forward in both races and to get a top ten was great in the opener. After two rounds I really feel like I’m part of the team and it’s all going well.”

Luke Browning, #11 (Kingsley, Cheshire), said

“It’s a good haul of points but we know we could have got two wins with the pace in the car and I have to wonder what might have been. The incident in race one really cost me and to be honest, I didn’t think I would be able to come back the way I did but the car was mega and it was great fun.

“In race two, I think I could have pushed for the win had it not been for the safety cars which meant I couldn’t really make a move on Louis for victory. We’ve minimised our losses in the championship and it’s just a shame we didn’t claw back points like we should have done. We’ll aim to put that right at Silverstone.”

James Taylor, #66 (Rotherham, Yorkshire), said

“It’s been another really strong weekend for me and I’m pleased with a podium in race one and then a rookie podium in race two. I think I’ve raced well in both races, and without the safety car, could have maybe done even better from P9 on the grid in race two.

“The conditions have been tough on track with the rain, particularly when you were right on the edge, but there was more grip than I expected which helped us to come through the field.”

Emily Linscott, #99 (Langdon Hills, Essex), said

“I was on the back foot after practice when I lost the brakes into the hairpin and I was lucky that the end result wasn’t a lot worse. The team did a great job to repair the car for qualifying but I was lacking confidence, which left me at the back of the grid.

“Race one I don’t feel I really drove to the best of my ability and didn’t deal with the conditions as well as I could have done, but I felt a lot more confident in race two and think that was reflected in how I did. I made up some places and felt much happier behind the wheel and I’m now looking forward to Silverstone.”