Richardson Racing fights hard for Brands Hatch top ten
he Richardson Racing team battled hard in challenging conditions at Brands Hatch to secure a top ten finish from the second meeting of the Porsche Carrera Cup GB season.
The Corby-based team headed for the famous Kent circuit on the back of a solid debut in the series at Donington Park a week earlier, where teenage racer Will Martin had picked up a top ten finish on his first outing in the series.
Friday testing saw the #10 Porsche end up eleventh on the combined times, with Will sitting tenth amongst the Pro class drivers with a best time little more than a second off the fastest time despite being forced to contend with extreme heat on one of the hottest days of the year.
Saturday’s qualifying session, held once again in sweltering conditions, would see a similar result for Will, despite struggling for rear-end grip around the high-speed GP loop; lapping a full eight-tenths of a second quicker than he had done during practice.
The opening race would start in disappointing fashion when Will stalled as the lights went out, dropping him back to 19th spot and leaving him with work to do over the course of the 17 lap encounter.
Avoiding two incidents on track that would result in the safety car being deployed, Will battled his way back up the order to run in twelfth spot in the limited green flag running available, and would then make up two places on the final two laps to cross the line in tenth place and secure the final championship point.
Post-race, Will would then be promoted an additional spot into ninth when one of the drivers ahead was handed a penalty.
Given the way in which he had recovered through the field, Will headed into race two optimistic of pushing for more points and survived a skirmish on the opening lap at Paddock Hill Bend to find himself running inside the top seven after an early caution period.
However, contact from the car of Dorian Mansilla going into Hawthorns saw him tipped into a spin that ended with the Porsche in the barriers on the outside of the circuit, and left Will to watch on disappointed from the sidelines.
With two rounds of the season now complete, Will sits ninth in the standings ahead of the next round at Oulton Park in two weeks time.
"It’s been a mixed weekend on track and it wasn’t easy with the heat in the car," he said. "Qualifying was tough as I was struggling a bit on the Grand Prix loop with rear end grip, but my focus was on trying to pick up some good results on race day.
"Stalling at the start of the first race wasn’t part of the plan and the safety car periods made it tough to make up places. To come back through to score points from the limited laps there were was pleasing, and I felt we could build on it in race two.
"Sadly, we didn’t get the chance to do that because of an incident that I felt could have been avoided, and it’s a shame because I think we could have picked up a good result as we had good pace in the car.
"I have a few weeks now to reflect before the next round at Oulton Park, but I think we’ve done well during the first two weekends of the season. As a new team in this championship, it’s been a challenge for all us, but it’s really satisfying to see how well we have done against rivals who have been competing here for years.
"For me personally, the Porsche is so different to the Ginetta I have raced for the last few years, not just in terms of the speed, but also in how you have to drive the car and the levels of grip it has. There are a few habits from the Ginetta that I still need to get out of, but I feel I’m getting in the groove more with the Porsche every time I go on track and am looking forward to the remainder of the season."