Nicole Drought took another podium finish in round five of the Britcar Endurance Championship at Oulton Park in Cheshire at the weekend. Driving the CJJ Motorsport Porsche 718 GT4 alongside team mate Sean Doyle, Nicole made major steps forward as her experience continued to grow.
Arriving at the circuit second in the class championship, just a few points off the lead, the pair were determined to take a top three finish, despite the arrival of many new teams to the series at this, the fifth round. The weekend started well with the Valluga run Porsche claiming second in class in qualifying- and sixth overall.
It has been a year of “firsts” for Nicole and this time was to be her first ever time to take the start of a GT race, as well as her first time to race at Oulton, but the Motorsport Ireland Ambassador aquitted herself admirably, holding second in class for her entire stint, before pitting to hand over to Sean Doyle. The team lost a place during the pitstop but came home third in class for another haul of championship points.
Nicole Drought, CJJ Motorsports Driver: “I’m very happy with the weekend. I visited Valluga during the week and did some work on the Simulator with Sean and (Team Principal) Benji Hetherington. I was more confident when we arrived at the circuit and this transferred into my performance. This was the first time I felt confident with the car and it showed in my lap times. If I can keep matching Sean in the car, I’ll be very happy. As ever, I would like to thank John and Suzanne Campion, without whom none of this would be possible.
Benji Hetherington, Team Principal, Valluga Racing: “A fantastic weekend. Both drivers drove really well, Nicole in particular. She drove really really well all through Friday and carried that form into Saturday. To go out there and do her first race start in a GT car… she handled everything really well and maintained a decent gap of about three seconds to P1 by the pitstop. We couldn’t ask for any more for her in terms of what the car is capable of. This weekend she turned a massive corner, having achieved the fastest lap of the car for the race, which really demonstrated that. I’m very happy and looking forward to the next race.”
This means Nicole and Sean have now regained the lead of the class championship with just four rounds to run. Their next race is at the famous Silverstone Circuit on October 10th.
Action Image from Jack Morris