Race Report from Donnington, 5th/6th September 2015 by Kester Cook
We were blessed with plenty of sunshine for our CSCC Tin Tops race meeting at Donington Park.
I am still getting used to and adapting my driving style to the new 2.0l upgrade. Taking my trusty fiesta out for qualifying was a little daunting as it was like driving the car again for the first time at a new circuit. The job at hand during qualifying was more about learning my braking points and entry speeds again which naturally took focus away on setting a fast lap.
Craig Sampson of SBD Motorsport joined me as our 2nd driver, giving him his 2nd ever circuit race with this being his first visit to Donington!
In qualifying we set a lap time of 1:22.529 putting us in a starting position of 8th on the grid and first in class.
For this race meeting I decided to try out a new tyre, Dunlop Direzza. I found that I could not get a good balance with the car, a lot over and understeer. Not sure how much was due to the tyres and how much to do with the circuit conditions as Donington is notorious for being a slippy circuit, even when the weather is dry.
There was a break of about 5 hours between our qualifying and racing so it was nice to be able to catch up with friends, relax and watch some racing!
Getting ready for the race……I felt strangely nervous in the holding area in anticipation of getting out and racing. Perhaps it was my mixed thoughts about the new tyre playing on my mind. I am also super cautious (almost paranoid) about any little rattle or odd noise the car made, purely because I cannot believe how well it is performing at the moment.
We had a rolling start however the grid was not kept as tight as it should have been and the cars controlling the pace at the front bolted before the lights had changed. Straight away we (as others were ) found ourselves at a disadvantage from the start.
It took me a few laps to catch up with the front runners again and I was having a good race with the blue Clio of Tom Mensley until I fluffed a gear up which dropped me back that I couldn’t catch him up. A couple of friends helped out with a smooth pitstop, getting Craig into the car and racing for 5th position. We finished 5th Overall and 1st in class.
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