Brands Hatch (GP) 2010

Caine and Harvey share Carrera Cup poles at Brands

Media release: 1 May 2010

Michael Caine and Tim Harvey claimed a pole position each in the Porsche Carrera Cup GB during qualifying at Brands Hatch today (Saturday 1 May) ahead of rounds five and six of the championship. Ollie Jackson (Addison Lee Motorbase) headed pro-am1 for both races, while Steve Parish (Addison Lee Motorbase) and Mark Hazell (JHR) shared the top places in pro-am2.

Caine (Motorbase Performance) set a cracking pace on his first set of tyres to take pole for Sunday's opening race with a best lap of 1m28.445s. Generally, the session times got a little slower as qualifying progressed and so Caine brought a halt to Tim Harvey's run of four consecutive poles. "We just needed to stop Harvey," said Caine. "On my second run I got tangled up in traffic," he added as Harvey clinched pole for round six with the top second best qualifying lap.

"The throttle cable slipped and I didn't have full throttle for the first run," said Harvey who, nevertheless, was less than three-hundredths of a second slower than Caine for round five and then on pole by a fifth of a second for round six. However, with rain forecast for Sunday, the balance of power could shift again as Harvey bids to extend his winning sequence beyond four races.

Third fastest for both races was Glynn Geddie (Team Parker Racing), who was closer to Caine and Harvey than he had been at Thruxton and Rockingham. "We've made a big improvement since Rockingham," said the young Scot, who has the pace to run with the two leaders in Sunday's races.

With fourth and fifth places overall, Jackson again set the pro-am1 pace with impressive pace against the pro drivers. "There's still a bit more time left in the car, but I'm four-tenths closer to Michael Caine today," said Jackson of his Motorbase team mate and benchmark. Sharing second and third in pro-am1 were Jonas Gelzinis (Juta Racing) and Tony Gilham (Collins Redesign Racing), with Gelzinis belying his very limited track experience with a strong run.

"I still want to be faster, but it's a very difficult circuit and qualifying is very important," said Gelzinis. "There was a lot of traffic and I tried to hang back at the start, but didn't get a clear lap," said Gilham. Stephen Jelley (Team Parker Racing) and Charlie Bateman (Motorbase Performance) both posted two top six times, with Jelley starting fourth for round six.

Tom Bradshaw (JHR) and Euan Hankey (Team Parker Racing) were in the top 10 for both races, although Hankey's session was interrupted by a trip through the gravel at Clark Curve early in qualifying.

Once again, pro-am2 was superbly competitive with less than a quarter of a second covering the top three for round five. Parish claimed the first pole from Hazell and George Richardson (Motorbase Performance), while Hazell turned the tables on Parish for the second race with Richardson again third to maintain the strong form he showed at Rockingham. "That's two and a half seconds faster than the last time here," said Parish after an impressive run. "I had a big spin at Paddock but kept the car out of the gravel," he added. Hazell, meanwhile, was right in contention to add to his three pro-am2 wins to date this season. "My team mate Tom Bradshaw gave me a pull round; the car is really good," said Hazell.

Caine dominates Carrera Cup round five at Brands Hatch

Media release: 2 May 2010

Michael Caine was peerless in round five of the Porsche Carrera Cup GB at Brands Hatch today (Sunday 2 May) as he romped to victory in soaking conditions. Jonas Gelzinis (Juta Racing) drove a superb race to take his first pro-am1 victory, while Steve Parish (Addison Lee Motorbase) was equally impressive as he blitzed the pro-am2 category.

With steady rain falling, the 27-car field plunged into Paddock Hill Bend with Caine (Motorbase Performance) leading away from pole position and Tim Harvey (Red Line Racing) slotting into second as the pack ran cleanly around the opening lap. Caine was quick to press home his advantage and pulled clear at around a second a lap as Harvey consolidated second place. That set the standard for the race and Caine was able to build a 10-second lead as he romped to a commanding victory. "The car was fantastic and it was just a case of hanging on for the first five or six laps," said Caine after his first win of 2010. "We're pleased to get that first result."

Although Harvey ran a secure second race-long, he accepted that Caine had the advantage. "Michael was just the class of the field and I didn't have anything for him at all," said the championship leader. "I expected several safety cars and so initially I wasn't too concerned, but that never came." In fact, the standard of driving through the field was excellent in some truly challenging conditions and there was no need for a safety car.

Initially, Glynn Geddie (Team Parker Racing) held third place but a storming opening salvo from Tom Bradshaw (JHR) took him from seventh to fourth and then past Geddie as they braked for Druids on the fifth lap. Just as he was about to chase after Harvey for second, Bradshaw got tagged as Surtees as Geddie re-challenged and the JHR car spun down the order. Geddie was later penalised three championship points over the incident.

Meanwhile, Stephen Jelley (Team Parker Racing) made good progress to overhaul Geddie for third as Euan Hankey (Team Parker Racing) battled up to fifth and challenged Geddie over the second half of the race. "It was one of those races where you had to be careful at the start and then get on it," said Jelley after an excellent podium finish. Behind Hankey, Michael Meadows (Red Line Racing) completed the top six after Charlie Bateman (Motorbase Performance) ended his race in the gravel trap at Druids.

Gelzinis was highly impressive on his way to pro-am1 victory, although it could have been a lot tougher had Ollie Jackson (Addison Lee Motorbase) not had two spins at Surtees. "It was very difficult conditions and I just tried to avoid the accidents," said Gelzinis, who took seventh overall from the recovering Bradshaw. "There was a river across the circuit at Surtees and it just picked the front of the car up. But I can't believe I did it twice," said Jackson, who eventually finished fifth behind Tony Gilham (Collins Redesign Racing), Archie Hamilton (Red Line Racing) and Michael Leonard (Team Parker Racing).

In amongst the pro-am1 racers was Parish, who drove a brilliant race to win pro-am2 by a commanding margin. "I've never driven in the rain like that before," said Parish. "Fortunately, I got away and the guys behind me were mixing it. It was brilliant; I loved it!" Through to second in pro-am2 came Glenn McMenamin (Red Line Racing) after he battled ahead of class rival Mark Hazell (JHR). "I'm pleased with that from fifth on the grid," said McMenamin.

Harvey wins Carrera Cup round six at Brands

Media release: 2 May 2010

Tim Harvey put himself back at the top of the Porsche Carrera Cup GB at Brands Hatch today (Sunday 2 May) with an emphatic victory in round six of the championship. Ollie Jackson (Addison Lee Motorbase) was the class of the pro-am1 category while Paul Mace (GT Marques) took his first pro-am2 victory of the season.

Although still wet, the track was not as soaking as it had been for round five earlier in the day and Harvey (Red Line Racing) won the sprint to the first corner as a fast-starting Glynn Geddie (Team Parker Racing) beat Michael Caine (Motorbase Performance) away. That was a critical moment in the race, as Geddie's strong early pace took him right on to Harvey's pace and left Caine sitting in third.

For the first six laps, Geddie mounted a constant challenge on Harvey, but then as Caine got up to speed he was able to make it three-car train for the lead. With Caine starting to attack Geddie, Harvey was able to edge clear. On lap nine, Caine finally dislodged Geddie, but Harvey was now around three seconds clear.

"I just couldn't get the heat in the rear tyres at the start," said Caine. "Glynn was mega at the start and it was never going to be easy to get past him." Meanwhile, Harvey was able to maintain his margin to secure his fifth win from six races. "Glynn is always a challenger in the early laps of a wet race, but I was gradually able to concentrate on my own race," said Harvey, who leaves Brands with the same 12-point lead over Caine.

One of the drives of the race came from Tom Bradshaw (JHR), who battled through to fourth and then reeled in Geddie before diving ahead with a bold move into Paddock Hill Bend. "I loved that; it was brilliant," said Bradshaw of his race. "So much hard work has gone into that," he said after being confirmed as the 'driver of the weekend'. Meanwhile, the JHR team was presented with the 'team of the weekend' award.

Geddie battled home fourth as his tyres struggled over the later stages and Charles Bateman (Motorbase Performance) was close enough to challenge until he ran wide at Surtees on the last lap. Bateman still took a good fifth with Euan Hankey (Team Parker Racing) in sixth.

Jackson soon found himself running in a solitary seventh place and was a clear winner of the pro-am1 category. "I just kept some in reserve and tried not to kill the tyres," said Jackson, as Tony Gilham (Collins ReDesign Racing) fought back to second in pro-am1 after a spin at Surtees. Gilham had to battle ahead of Jonas Gelzinis (Juta Racing) and Ahmad Al Harthy (Red Line Racing) in the closing stages.

With Steve Parish (Addison Lee Motorbase) sidelined at the start, Mace was a dominant winner in pro-am2, after diving ahead of early leader Mark Hazell (JHR) in a daring move at Surtees. "Mark made it difficult and I had two wheels on the grass," said Mace of the move. Once ahead, Mace went well clear as a stirring drive from George Richardson (Motorbase Performance) clinched second despite constant pressure from Glenn McMenamin (Red Line Racing).