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November 21, 2017

Ratcliffe: “A Frustrating Weekend at Oulton Park”

Ratcliffe: “A Frustrating Weekend at Oulton Park”

After a long and frustrating weekend at Oulton Park, it’s fair to say I am happy with the results considering the circumstances. We had problem after problem this weekend with our car.

Due to fuel pressure issues we qualified last. Thinking the problem was fixed on Sunday, we set out for free practice on Monday morning and found that the problem was still there. The team managed to find the problem and fix it just in time before the first race!

We were off to a fantastic start, Rick drove a blinding stint, by the time he handed the car over to me we had a 26 second lead over Declan Jones and Zoe Wenham. However due to another team pitting in our pit box we mis-calculated the pit stop and had a stop-go penalty given to us. This meant that Declan was able to take the lead from us in Race 1 and we brought the car home in second.

I started Race 2 and, after being held up by a GT3 car on the first lap, I had a lot of work to do to catch the leaders. By the time I passed the APO Ginetta I was chasing down Declan, however 4 laps into the race the brake calliper seized and cooked the front brakes leaving us with virtually no brakes.

I nursed the car around to make sure we finished to get as many points as possible, it was time for Rick to go out in the car but being 26 seconds behind second position – and 50 seconds behind the leader – we just wanted the points. Rick was lapping 2 seconds a lap faster than Zoe Wenham even though we had no brakes!

After the GT3 Ginetta caught fire the safety car was released and it played into our hands, by the last lap Rick was on Zoe and he was quicker, it was a tense 2 minutes for the team but Zoe planted the car on every apex making it impossible for rick to pass her. Again we finished in second place a highly-credible finish considering the problems we had.

I am really looking forward to Rockingham. I am confident that myself and Rick are in a good position for a win there. We hope you’ll be there too.

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