Michael Meadows made it five wins from eight races this season in round eight of the Porsche Carrera Cup GB at Oulton Park today (Sunday 10 June). In a race full of incident, Meadows fended off the challenge of Jonas Gelzinis as round seven winner Sam Tordoff battled back to third place.
With two separate incidents of coolant being dropped on the track, the conditions were very challenging and fortunes changed lap by lap. In Pro-Am1, Oly Mortimer held off a big late attack from Ahmad Al Harthy to win, while Will Goff completed a double Pro-Am2 victory as category rival Tautvydas Barstys slid off at Druids.
Meadows (Redline Racing) converted pole position into a first lap lead from Daniel Lloyd (JD Pierce with Parker) and Gelzinis (Juta Racing), but Tordoff (Team Parker Racing) was squeezed wide on the exit of the first corner and dropped to fifth place behind Glynn Geddie (Redline Racing). However, part way round the opening lap, Michael Leonard (Naas Court Hotel with Parker) damaged a front radiator and dropped coolant.
On the second lap, the leaders hit the coolant at Knickerbrook and Lloyd had a big moment. Geddie suffered even more and bounced across the gravel, losing many places in the process. That drama allowed Meadows and Gelzinis to go clear at the front of the race as Tordoff battled into third from the recovering Lloyd and Rory Butcher (Celtic Speed).
Up front, Meadows controlled the race but more coolant was dropped six laps later when Geddie damaged a radiator. Meadows had a big moment across the grass at Knickerbrook as a result and a lap later Gelzinis did the same thing, so that the gap remained static. Steadily, Meadows then extended his lead from Gelzinis, while Tordoff closed the gap in third before Gelzinis responded to hold the place.
“That’s been a tough weekend,” said Meadows, who extended his championship lead to 34 points. “The coolant caused havoc, but it worked in my favour. On one lap I ended up bouncing across the grass, but luckily Jonas did the same thing.” Tordoff, meanwhile, was named ‘driver of the weekend’ and reckoned the race had been tougher than the earlier race. “We were all driving on different lines to try and avoid the coolant,” he said. Butcher worked ahead of Lloyd to complete a strong weekend with fourth place.
Despite feeling decidedly unwell, Mortimer (GT Marques) drove a superb race to win Pro-Am1 and fended off Pro racer Ben Barker (Parr Motorsport) for many laps. Once Barker found a way ahead, Mortimer came under increasing pressure from Al Harthy (Redline/Oman Air), who had started at the back of the grid as a penalty for taking new tyres for the race. Al Harthy stormed up the order and closed in on Mortimer, before mounting a persistent attack over the closing stages.
“I got a clear track on the first lap,” said Mortimer after clinching victory. “That’s the hardest race I’ve ever had.” Al Harthy, meanwhile, had raced from 17th to ninth in a race full of drama. “I had to push hard and I had to take the coolant as an advantage,” he said. “I’m really happy with that.” Derek Pierce (JD Pierce with Parker) had been running with Al Harthy until losing ground on the coolant, but still took the final podium place in Pro-Am1.
In Pro-Am2, Goff raced home unopposed once Barstys slid into the tyre wall, but it was still a testing race. “It was very slippery,” said Goff. “It had just cleared and then more went down.”
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