Richardson Racing enjoyed its best weekend by far in the Porsche Carrera Cup GB at Thruxton after rookie driver Will Martin secured his maiden victory in the fastest one-make series in the UK.
The Corby-based team headed for Will’s home circuit – one where he won twice last season in the Ginetta Junior Championship – looking to build on a solid weekend at Knockhill last time out, where Will secured his best result in the series to date and picked up two solid points finishes.
Will was quickly up to speed when the Thruxton weekend kicked off and set the seventh time during Friday testing – just two tenths of a second away from the top three.
That pace meant confidence was high heading into qualifying, and Will produced his best performance of the season as he held provisional pole in the early stages before eventually ending up with the third quickest time, having gone half a second quicker than on Friday.
In fact, things could have been even better for the talented teenager when he went under the qualifying lap record on his final timed lap of the session only to miss out on a maiden front row start when he was deemed to have exceeded track limits.
Lining up on the second row of the grid for the opening race Will made a good start when the lights went out to get ahead of Lorcan Hanafin into second spot.
>From there, Will found himself forced to defend hard to keep Josh Webster at bay, with the former champion firmly fixed onto the rear of Will’s car throughout the 20 lap race. A small error from Will on lap eleven allowed Josh to get ahead only for Will to then reclaim the place when Webster made an error of his own at the final chicane.
Will was fighting hard to keep Webster at bay before leader Harry King suddenly suffered a puncture with two laps of the race left to run. That allowed Will to sweep through into the lead and he kept Webster behind to the flag to secure a dramatic maiden victory.
Having drawn himself in fifth place on the grid for the second race of the weekend, Will made up a place on the opening lap after getting ahead of Webster but then lost places on lap two when a forceful move from King at the complex saw him run wide and lose momentum.
Undeterred, Will got his head down and settled into a rhythm with a series of quick and consistent laps, and was able to make the most of issues for some of his rivals to come through to third place and secure a second podium finish of the weekend.
The impressive results for the series rookie saw him awarded the Driver of the Day at the conclusion of the weekend and leave Will seventh in the standings heading to Silverstone next weekend for the sixth meeting of the year.
“I’m lost for words,” he said. “We came into the weekend with relatively low expectations because we haven’t been here with the Porsche and it’s such a unique circuit, but twelve months ago I got my first Ginetta Junior win and now I’ve repeated it with my first Carrera Cup victory. To get that and then add another podium in race two is brilliant; I’m over the moon.
“The first race was really tough as Josh didn’t give me any time to relax but I was able to stay consistent and manage the tyres, which was a huge challenge with someone like Josh behind me. Having to manage the tyres like that is something I haven’t had to do before, so that has been a big learning curve.
“We didn’t quite have the outright pace in race two but again, it was all about managing the tyres and that is what ultimately allowed me to get on the podium again. This has been a great weekend and is another boost to my confidence, but we have to make sure we stay humble and don’t get too carried away going to Silverstone next weekend.”