Finesse Motorsport’s Jake Giddings (Wisbech) produced a star performance during Renault UK Clio Cup testing at Cheshire’s Oulton Park Island Circuit today, Friday, 7th June, to top the timesheets by a very impressive 0.3 second margin.
The 18-year-old, who is equal seventh in the championship standings, goes into the weekend’s two races at the 2.23-mile track buoyed by the showing and aiming for a pair of second row starting slots, at least, for rounds seven and eight.
Lapping eighth fastest in the opening 40-minute session, within 0.3 seconds of morning pace-setter Stefan Hodgetts (Redditch), Giddings rocketed to the top of the pile in the afternoon with the best lap of the day, a time of 1m36.223 seconds (83.28mph) – also making him the fastest Graduate Cup class runner.
“It’s been going really well today”, said the Cambridgeshire racer, “We had a lot of pace at Thruxton and we seem to have continued on from there. I love Oulton, it’s a great circuit – a proper drivers circuit – so hopefully I can keep this up tomorrow in quali.
“The car is a lot better than at the start of the season but I think something has just clicked really, I’m getting more experience but being further up the front helps pull you along as well. For quali the top three would be nice, but since I’ve been fastest today I’d love pole for at least one race.”
Hodgetts didn’t better his morning time in the second run, meaning he ended the day fourth fastest overall behind KX Racing with Scuderia Vittoria team-mate Ant Whorton-Eales (Lichfield), who was an excellent second quickest, and JHR Developments’ Josh Cook (Bristol).
Championship leader Paul Rivett (Banstead) was consistently rapid with the fifth best time in session one and the fourth quickest lap in the afternoon, placing the Names.co.uk/Stancombe Vehicle Engineering driver sixth quickest for the day behind JHR’s Lee Pattison (Liversedge) – the latter comfortably heading the Masters Cup class.
Scuderia Vittoria’s first year competitor Devon Modell (Maidstone) was a tremendous seventh fastest on combined times, within just 0.5 seconds of Giddings’ timesheet-topping pace, ahead of lead Team Pyro driver Alex Morgan (Reading), Westbourne Motorsport’s James Colburn (Worthing) and Total Control Racing’s Rob Smith (Telford) who completed the top 10.
Qualifying for rounds seven and eight of the 2013 Renault UK Clio Cup season will take place at 11.00 tomorrow, Saturday, 8th June, with race one of the weekend getting underway at 16.30. On Sunday, 9th June, round eight, which will be screened live on ITV4, ITV4 HD and streamed online at the www.itv.com/btcc website, will begin at approximately 15.15.
Renault UK Clio Cup is sponsored by www.buyoils.co.uk with support from ELF, NGK Spark Plugs, WP Racing and official tyre supplier Dunlop.
Provisional 2013 Renault UK Clio Cup Driver Standings (after Rd6):
1st Paul Rivett, 150pts; 2nd Josh Files, 147pts; 3rd Alex Morgan, 135pts
Provisional 2013 Renault UK Clio Cup WP Racing Clio Cup Team Trophy Standings (after Rd6):
1st Team Pyro, 282pts; 2nd Westbourne Motorsport, 220pts; 3rd Scuderia Vittoria, 181pts
Provisional 2013 Renault UK Clio Cup ‘Graduate Cup’ Standings (after Rd6):
1st Josh Files, 170pts; 2nd James Colburn, 150pts; 3rd Jake Giddings, 125pts
Provisional 2013 Renault UK Clio Cup ‘Masters Cup’ Standings (after Rd6):
1st Simon Belcher, 148pts; 2nd Graham Field, 144pts; 3rd Finlay Crocker, 139pts