Very cool but dry in the morning for qualifying, though once again it did look like it could rain at any moment.
The session started well on the first set of tyres with my quickest lap putting us at P4 on the grid. The whole circuit has been resurfaced just prior to the F1 race here recently, so there is an incredible amount of new grip to be used.
On the second set of tyres I improved further, but did not fully exploit the even more increasing grip that was there as the track revolved during the session and as such ended the session in P11. Times were very close, with mine still being narrowly outside the top 5, however these are the narrow margins that make the difference so work to be done in the race from there.
In the race I got away well off the line, and had to avoid an incident just in front of me entering the Maggots/Becketts complex of corners which I managed to do putting me in 10th position. Then I made a good move up the inside on the same lap to take 9th place.
From there for most of the race I was in a train of 6 cars trying to attack the one in front whilst at times needing to defend from behind. It would stay this way for the majority of the race until in the second last lap when the driver behind me made a late move under braking to my inside. Unfortunately to do so he ran a little deep and made fairly solid contact with my car in the process dropping me to 10th.
Following the race the incident was investigated, with the result being determined as a “racing incident” so no penalties were applied.
Qualifying the focus for Sunday, and will be pushing for a much better position for Race 2.
As this round is like a home round for me, there were many family and friends that have come along to watch for the weekend and it was great to see everyone in the garage in the evening. I am so grateful for all the support. Also, really nice to be surprised to celebrate my 100th race start today in cars!
Looking forward to tomorrow.