Harper Stars for Douglas Motorsport at Snetterton
The Simpson Race Products Ginetta Junior and Michelin Ginetta GT4 Supercup Championships visited Snetterton circuit last weekend, once again supporting the BTCC and racing in front of capacity crowds as well as live TV cameras.
Daniel Harper has been nothing short of a revelation in the Junior series thus far and the Douglas Motorsport driver continued this strong form into qualifying- taking fourth place. Enzo Fittipaldi continued to improve with seventh with series leader Stuart Middleton in an unaccustomed eighth place.
In race one, Harper belied his lack of experience with a stunning drive, working his way to the front by the third lap and then withstanding incredible pressure in the closing stages to take not only his second outright win in the series, but his sixth Rookie win to boot. Fittipaldi, continuing his improvement, had looked set for seventh but a spin in the closing stages dropped him down the order. Unfortunately Stuart Middleton made little progress crossing the line in eighth place.
In race two, Harper led away from pole position and in an action packed race appeared to have taken his second victory of the day. It was not to be though as the Stewards demoted the young Northern Irishman to third for his involvement in some of the hard fought action at the sharp end of the field.
Once again Middleton struggled, at least by his lofty standards, coming home in seventh but losing his series lead.
In the Ginetta GT4 Supercup, Douglas Motorsport’s will Burns qualified on the front row of the closely matched grid. In race one, Burns held his position and after an early challenge for the lead on the opening lap, consolidated his advantage over third place man Tom Wrigley to score yet another podium finish. In race two Burns again held second place but came under attack from Wrigley. When Wrigley eventually found a way through, at Riches on the seventh lap, Carl Boardley also seized the opportunity with Burns briefly boxed out. Despite staying in touch with the leaders, Burns had to settle for fourth at the flag. Due to numerous delays during the day, race three for the series was cancelled.
Daniel Harper: ““It’s been an absolutely incredible weekend. I can’t believe that we came away with two wins on the road, and I can’t thank the whole Douglas Motorsport team enough for their hard work this weekend. Everything was thrown at me across the two races and they were definitely two of the hardest races of my career so far. Everyone wanted to win out there and did everything they could to beat me, so it was such hard work. Qualifying didn’t go perfectly to plan, but we knew we could work from fourth on the grid and look to make progress, and to come through to first on the road in both races is incredible for us. While the penalty is frustrating, the pace we’ve shown over the weekend gives me huge confidence for the rest of the season.”
Wayne Douglas, Team Principal, Douglas Motorsport “Daniel drove superbly all weekend and it was great to get two wins on the road. Enzo also drove well and had his best qualifying position of the year so far. Unfortunately, Stuart had a bad qualifying and the championship is so close it is hard to recover. I have no doubt he will be back on the ultimate pace in Knockhill in two weeks time though!”
Images from Jakob Ebrey/Ginetta