Challenging Croft weekend for Richardson Racing’s Junior pairing

The Richardson Racing team battled hard on track to secure three points finishes from a tough weekend as the Michelin Ginetta Junior Championship headed for Croft for the seventh meeting of the season.

The Corby-based team fielded a slimmed-down, two-car team for the weekend after Trennon Bettany elected to sit out the meeting, with team-mates Georgi Dimitrov and Rowan Vincent left to the fly the flag in the two North Yorkshire races.

Friday practice saw mixed fortunes for the pair, with Georgi lapping inside the top ten and Rowan ending up 20th on the timesheets.

Come qualifying on Saturday, those fortunes would be reversed as Rowan was able to qualify in 17th with his fastest lap of the weekend, but Georgi was unable to set a time having suffered a snapped output shaft on his first lap.

The opening race of the weekend in tricky wet conditions would go behind the safety car early on following an incident on lap one, with both drivers having made up a place off the line.

When the action then got underway in earnest on lap three Georgi quickly moved up into 15th place before the safety car was again called onto the circuit.

Unfortunately, that was as a result of a spin for Rowan at Barcroft that ended with his car being stuck on the infield, having bogged down on the soft ground.

Just two laps remained when the race got back underway once again, with Georgi retaining his place through to the flag having been unable to make a move on the cars directly ahead despite being quicker.

Race two on Sunday would run in improved weather conditions, with Georgi making a strong start to jump up to 16th on the opening lap. From there, the four-time race winner fought hard to try and work his way up the order and would cross the line in eleventh spot – missing out on the top ten by less than half a second.

Maintaining his starting position on the opening lap, Rowan would also battle his way forwards despite a typically frenetic race in the midfield and was rewarded on the final lap when he took advantage of a clash between two rivals ahead – one he was lucky to avoid – to take 15th place.

The team now heads to Snetterton in two weeks time for the penultimate meeting of the season.

Rowan Vincent, #19 (Woking, Surrey), said:
“Having only had limited running in Friday testing, I was on the back foot a bit going into qualifying and the aim from there was to try and move forwards as much as we could in the races. Race one was unfortunate, but to come back with a points finish in race two was a good way to end the weekend.

“This is a learning season for me and even when things are more difficult like they have been this weekend, it still gives me more knowledge and experience to take forwards and hopefully we can have a solid end to the season across the final two rounds.”

Georgi Dimitrov, #23 (Newmarket, Suffolk), said:
“We were in a decent position after testing, but the issue in qualifying ultimately decided how the rest of the weekend would go. It’s unfortunate that something outside our control put us on the back foot, and it was difficult to go into both races from the back of the grid.

“There wasn’t much more I could have done in race one with the limited laps that there were, and in race two it was tough to make progress through the pack but we managed to come close to a top ten. It’s not been ideal in terms of the championship but I’ll keep fighting hard in the races to come.”