Ben Barker on the Grid at Spa

Ben Barker and the Parr Motorsport team had a positive result in the Belgian Grand Prix supporting Porsche Supercup race on Sunday.  The Briton had only managed to complete ten laps of the daunting Spa Francochamps circuit in the Adrennes forest before the weekend started.

Friday practice proved useful but it would all come down the to the all-important Saturday qualifying half hour. “Qualifying is crucial,” said Parr team boos Paul Robe. “We’re still rookies and learning everything about the car and track but we had a good feeling for a dry qualifying. Ben did his first run and came in but the time didn’t come.“

The car was hooked up.” Said Ben before going out for his second run. “There is so much grip I can’t believe it.” His time was two seconds faster than Friday, which this was down to improved track conditions and the new tyres. His second run was good, it’s a long lap so plenty of time to warm the tyres up. Unfortunately Ben went off line and picked up some debris on his tyres which never cleaned off properly and that affected his fastest lap. The final times would have Ben thirteenth on the grid for the race on Sunday morning. 

Ben got a good start and managed to pick off cars throughout the race on his way to ninth. “It was an exciting race,” said Ben after the race. “The first couple of laps were a bit manic, with positions changing all the time, but things settled down after that and I was able to get a good run on Engelhardt and Stanaway – although I was lucky to escape being collected by Vernay in the process!"

In the closing stages he was able to reel in and pass Team Bleekemolen driver Jerome Mul around the outside of Blancimont corner. He would gain one further position by passing Giermaziak on the last lap. “He had good pace in the race,” said Paul Robe as we now look to the next race at Monza on the 8th September.