Silverstone 2011

Silverstone decider for Porsche Carrera Cup GB

Media release: 7 October 2011

Source: Porsche Carrera Cup Great Britain

The Porsche Carrera Cup GB heads to Silverstone (15/16 October) for the closest finish in the history of the championship. Just three points split Michael Meadows, Stephen Jelley and James Sutton going into the final two races of the 19-round season and with a fabulous 27-car grid it promises to be a sensational conclusion to a fabulous season.
 
It is not only the overall title that is to be resolved among the stunning field of 450bhp 911 GT3 Cup cars. Although Jonas Gelzinis is now secure as Pro-Am1 champion, George Brewster and Keith Webster are battling for the Pro-Am2 title and the prestigious teams’ championship will also be decided at Silverstone. SAS/Redline has a useful advantage and strong finishes for Meadows and Sutton in the opening race will seal the title for the Cleveland-based squad.
 
With the kudos of a Carrera Cup title and over £60,000 in end of season prize money awaiting the top drivers and teams, there is going to some dramatic action. In addition, the overall champion, Pro-Am1 champion and winning team manager will all collect the keys to a road-going Porsche 911 to use for a year. There really is a great deal at stake as the final two rounds run in quick succession on Sunday, with barely two hours for teams to re-prepare cars for the second race.
 
The big story for Silverstone is the overall title race as Meadows and Sutton from the SAS/Redline team go head-to-head with Jelley (Parker with Juta). With one score to drop, it leaves Meadows and Jelley level on points with Sutton just three behind. It really is that close and if either of them finishes ahead in both races, that should be enough to settle the title.
 
“It’s going to be very tough,” said former Carrera Cup Scholar Meadows, who has enjoyed a superb season. “We’re all going to be giving it everything,” added Meadows. Jelley, meanwhile, is revved up to take the fight to the SAS twins. “It’s really winner takes all, which is fantastic,” he said. “It’s going to be a hell of a weekend.” Sutton reckons that the weekend will throw up a surprise or two. “It never runs smoothly and there is always one final twist,” said the 2007 champion. “I can’t imagine that this one will be any different.”
 
Of course, there are plenty of other drivers who simply want to win races this weekend, none more so than Bedford’s Nick Tandy who arrived in the championship in style at Brands Hatch in the Nationwide/Motorbase entry. The Porsche Supercup racer will be very hard to beat. Add in young chargers Euan Hankey (Parker with Juta), Richard Plant and Sam Tordoff from Team Parker Racing, Ben Hetherington (Oman Air/Redline) and Kieran Vernon (Nationwide/Motorbase) and the stage is set for two epic races on Sunday.
 
But this is not only about the overall contest. In Pro-Am1, Gelzinis (Juta Racing) is confirmed as champion but Rory Butcher (Celtic Speed) and Ahmad Al Harthy (Oman Air/Redline) are battling hard for second. However, it is still very close in Pro-Am2 where Brewster (Celtic Speed) has a slender advantage over Webster (Redline Racing). “Nothing is won, but we’re in good shape and it is for us to lose,” said Brewster. “It’s all on Silverstone and I think we’ll have a good clean fight there,” countered Webster. Other leading runners in Pro-Am2 include Steve Parish (Motorbase Performance), Yucel Ozbek (Redline Racing) and Richard Denny (Parr Motorsport).
 
After qualifying at 12.05 on Saturday, round 18 will start at 12.25 on Sunday followed by round 19 at 15.45. Both races will be broadcast live on ITV4 during the extensive BTCC programme, which starts at 11.00 on Sunday.
 
The overall points’ situation is:
Michael Meadows; currently on 282 but has to drop a score of 10 points
Stephen Jelley; currently on 272 with zero to drop
James Sutton; currently on 270 but has to drop a score of 1 point
Overall scoring system: 20-18-16-14-12-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 to the first 15 finishers plus 1 point for pole position for each race a 1 point for fastest lap in each race.
 
The Pro-Am2 points’ situation is:
George Brewster; currently on 121 but has to drop 11 points at Silverstone
Keith Webster; currently on 118 but has to drop 13 points at Silverstone
Pro-Am2 scoring system: 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 to the first 10 Pro-Am2 finishers plus 1 point for Pro-Am2 pole position for each race and 1 point for Pro-Am2 fastest lap in each race.

Tandy takes Carrera Cup GB poles at Silverstone

Media release: 15 October 2011

Source: Porsche Carrera Cup Great Britain

Nick Tandy claimed a double pole position for the final two rounds of the Porsche Carrera Cup GB during qualifying at Silverstone today (Saturday 15 October).
 
There were dramatically contrasting fortunes for the three title contenders as Michael Meadows and James Sutton shared second and third places, but Stephen Jelley had a torrid time and will start down in seventh and ninth places for the two races. Jonas Gelzinis twice headed Pro-Am1, while it was honours even between Pro-Am2 contenders Keith Webster and George Brewster who shared the category pole positions.
 
With the ambient temperature steadily rising, it was generally the first part of the session that delivered the best times and Tandy (Nationwide/Motorbase) judged the situation perfectly to break the 56s mark and take pole for round 18. He then posted a second best lap of 56.107s to complete a double pole, without needing to use his second set of tyres. At the end of the session he went out on his second set of tyres and did one lap to scrub them in. “It all went to plan,” said Tandy. “We planned the traffic quite well and the car was perfect for the two laps we needed.”
 
Things were almost as good for Meadows and Sutton, who both did two strong times on their first sets of tyres and didn’t even run their second sets. Those tyres will be scrubbed in on the green flag laps for the race. “We thought it might be quick at the start of the session, so we pushed very hard straight away,” said Meadows. “It’s very good for us.” Sutton was equally pleased to run strongly in qualifying. “There is still a long way to go but I’m very excited,” he said. All three drivers should be in good shape on tyres as the races progress into the later stages.
 
A gaggle of quick drivers led the chase of the top three, headed by Sam Tordoff (Team Parker Racing) for the opening race. “We just chipped away and I’m happy to be P4; it’s back where I need to be,” said Tordoff. P4 for the second race went to Ben Hetherington (Oman Air/Redline) after a strong session while Gelzinis (Juta Racing) was fifth overall on both grids to head Pro-Am1. “That was okay; we have consistent speed,” said Gelzinis. Rory Butcher (Celtic Speed) was second in Pro-Am1 with ninth and eighth places overall. “I got two good laps on the first set of tyres,” said Butcher as George Richardson (Motorbase Performance) and Ahmad Al Harthy (Oman Air/Redline) shared the third places.
 
The driver in most trouble in qualifying was Stephen Jelley (Parker with Juta) who lost out in traffic and ended the session with only seventh and ninth places. That leaves Jelley a long way back from title rivals Meadows and Sutton and with a mountain to climb if he is to challenge them for the title.
 
In Pro-Am2, Webster (Redline Racing) and Brewster (Celtic Speed) maintained the championship status quo by taking a pole position each. “I did nothing on my first set of tyres so I went out on the second set and went quicker,” said Webster. Brewster was content to have retained his slender points’ advantage over his rival. “One pole each is okay and we’re cool with that. We know it is going to be very close,” said Brewster. Close behind the title rivals came Steve Parish (Motorbase Performance) and Richard Denny (Parr Motorsport).

Tandy takes Carrera Cup GB victory at Silverstone

Media release: 16 October 2011

Source: Porsche Carrera Cup Great Britain

Nick Tandy clinched victory in the penultimate round of the Porsche Carrera Cup GB at Silverstone today (Sunday 16 October). While Tandy won from the front, James Sutton dived ahead of his team mate Michael Meadows to leave Meadows with a single point lead in the championship going into the final race later this afternoon.
 
However, there was disaster for title contender Stephen Jelley who went out with a damaged radiator, which leaves him with only a very slim chance of taking the title. Jonas Gelzinis won Pro-Am1 while George Brewster won an action-packed Pro-Am2 category to move closer to the title after rival Keith Webster spun on fluid when holding a clear lead. Finally, SAS/Redline claimed the teams’ championship.
 
The first 200 metres of the race was critical to the title contest as Sutton jumped ahead of SAS/Redline team mate Meadows to take second behind Tandy (Nationwide/Motorbase). “I just got a fairly good start,” said Sutton. Meadows knew it was the pivotal moment of the race. “He got me off the line; there was rubbish on my side of the track and I didn’t get the start I needed,” said Meadows.
 
While Tandy set about consolidating his lead, Jelley (Parker with Juta) was scything up the order from seventh on the grid and dived through to fourth after just three laps. But Jelley struggled to close the gap to Meadows and that was how they ran until lap 19 when Tandy caught a backmarker under a yellow flag at Brooklands. He had to back off and not overtake and in an instant his lead evaporated. Sutton, Meadows and Jelley all closed right in and as they braked for Becketts, Jelley clipped the back of Meadows’ car and punctured a front radiator. Jelley limped back to the pits to retire, but dropped coolant at Brooklands in the process. “There was already coolant down and I sailed into the back of Michael,” said Jelley.
 
Tandy quickly re-established his leading margin to secure victory as Sutton chased and Meadows recovered to take third, finishing under pressure from Sam Tordoff (Team Parker Racing), Gelzinis (Juta Racing) and Euan Hankey (Parker with Juta). “Over the last half of the race the line was changing every lap due to the fluid,” said Tandy. “After the start it was a case of managing the gap,” said Sutton after a very important result for his championship bid.
 
Gelzinis was always clear in Pro-Am1 as Rory Butcher (Celtic Speed) ran a strong race to take a clear second and move closer to the championship runner-up position. “It was very challenging with the dropped fluid, but I had a good rhythm,” said Butcher. Delighted to complete the Pro-Am1 podium was George Richardson (Motorbase Performance) despite a pursuit from Ahmad Al Harthy (Oman Air/Redline) and Derek Pierce (Dextra/JD Pierce by Parker).
 
There was a dramatic race in Pro-Am2 as Webster (Redline Racing) set a cracking pace from the start and looked set for a commanding win. Meanwhile Brewster (Celtic Speed) made a poor start and dropped to fourth in class behind Yucel Ozbek (Redline Racing) and Steve Parish (Motorbase Performance). As Brewster set about fighting up the order, Webster controlled the pace until the fluid from Jelley’s car went down at Brooklands.
 
“There was fluid everywhere and a car parked in the middle of the road,” said Webster after spinning and losing a lot of time. “I was pacing myself but it just wasn’t meant to be.” Instead, Brewster battled through to win after surviving an attack by Ozbek at Becketts on the dropped fluid. “I saw the fluid down and Yucel didn’t. I had to abort the corner to give him room,” said Brewster. “I couldn’t have caught Keith,” he added as Parish got ahead of Ozbek to take third.

Tandy, Sutton and Brewster score in Carrera Cup GB

Media release: 16 October 2011

Source: Porsche Carrera Cup Great Britain
 
Nick Tandy, James Sutton and George Brewster were the big winners in the final round of the Porsche Carrera Cup GB at Silverstone today (Sunday 16 October). While Tandy made it three wins from four starts, Sutton clinched the overall title and Brewster claimed the Pro-Am2 crown in a superb finish to the best season so far for the Carrera Cup GB.
 
Sutton ran second behind Tandy all the way to the flag to win the title for the second time as his team mate and title rival Michael Meadows ran third before having to pit with a front puncture. Meanwhile, Brewster had to fight back from a first lap knock and subsequent puncture to win the Pro-Am2 title. In the final race of the season, Jonas Gelzinis bagged another Pro-Am1 win and Keith Webster dominated Pro-Am2.
 
Tandy (Nationwide/Motorbase) got the start he wanted to burst into the lead and when Sutton beat his SAS/Redline partner Meadows into Copse he stamped his authority on the title contest. Sutton needed to beat Meadows to claim his second Carrera Cup crown and had to withstand immense pressure over the opening laps. While Tandy consolidated his lead, Sutton soaked up the pressure and then, by lap five, started to edge clear. For Meadows, it was all going wrong and a slow front puncture eventually sent him into the pits.
 
Now, Sutton just had to hold position and had no need to try and chase the fleeing Tandy. “That was one of the best handling Porsches I’ve ever had,” said Tandy after a resounding win. “We saved a couple of new tyres for this race and I got a good gap in the first five laps.” For Sutton, the overall title was a massive achievement. “It’s not really sunk in yet,” said Sutton. “The race was very difficult and over the early laps the pressure from Michael was intense.”
 
With Meadows dropping down the order, the final podium position was a great result for Ben Hetherington (Oman Air/Redline) who drove a superb race under pressure from Richard Plant (Team Parker Racing), Gelzinis (Juta Racing) and Stephen Jelley (Parker with Juta). Jelley recovered to sixth after hitting the rear of Meadows’ car and spinning as he challenged for third in the early lap. “That’s a great way to end the season,” said 2011 Carrera Cup Scholarship winner Hetherington, who also earned the ‘driver of the weekend’ award. SAS/Redline earned the ‘team of the weekend’ award.
 
Gelzinis dominated Pro-Am1 as a tremendous drive from George Richardson (Motorbase Performance) earned him second and his best result to date. “It’s really good to end the season on a high,” said Richardson, who had to race hard to fend off the challenge of Ahmad Al Harthy (Oman Air/Redline).
 
In Pro-Am2 it all started badly for Brewster (Celtic Speed) when he was tipped into a first lap spin by Richard Denny (Parr Motorsport). With a rear puncture as a result, Brewster had to limp slowly back to the pits as title rival Webster (Redline Racing) took a commanding lead. While Steve Parish (Motorbase Performance) and Denny completed the podium, Brewster rejoined a lap down and battled back to fourth and scored enough points to settle the Pro-Am2 crown.  “That was very difficult but we got through,” said a relieved Brewster. Webster, meanwhile, had given his all to try and win Pro-Am2. “That was the best drive I’ve ever had,” said Webster.