FJC ENDS ITS LONG BREAK & HEADS TO CADWELL PARK

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What could either Isaac Smith or Olly Turner do to prevent points leader Waite from dominating again? - Photo: Jon Elsey

After what may have almost seemed like a second “school holiday” of sorts between race weekend, the young lads and lasses of the BRSCC Fiesta Junior Championship racing with MRF Tyres finally get to hit the track once again for their second meeting of 2018. After the short, high speed layout of Brands Hatch’s Indy circuit, the FJC roster get their first true test here at Cadwell Park in Lincolnshire, a circuit where they will really learn a lot about car setup, handling and all round driving ability.

The opening rounds were really all about one driver, as JamSport’s James Waite opened his third season in the championship with a pair of dominant race victories from the front. While it is still incredibly early in the season, it can’t be denied that his margin of victory in both and overall pace throughout the weekend were somewhat ominous with a view to the rest of the season. Whether or not he’ll be able to keep that momentum up here at Cadwell remains to be seen but all the signs point to that definitely being the case.

His closest challenger all weekend at Brands Hatch was fellow JamSport stablemate and circuit racing rookie Isaac Smith, whose incredible adaptation to competing in a race car for the first time earned him two very strong and impressive second place finishes; this would also see him earn the first Driver of the Meeting accolade of the season as a result. Being on the pace so quickly would initially suggest that there is real potential for the karting graduate to pick up at least one win this year, however he’ll need to make progress in catching and keeping up with Waite first in order to do that.

His fellow podium finishers in both races were Josh Steed and Olly Turner respectively. Steed put in a fine drive from the back of the grid in Race 1 to collect his second FJC career podium and in the break between then and Cadwell, he has joined forces with Mutation Motorsport for the rest of the season. Given that Greg McIlwraith’s outfit are the masterminds behind Danny Harrison’s current senior success, one has to wonder just what kind of an effect they will have on pushing Steed further up the order and potentially into a race winning position. As for Turner, that chance of a first race win also looks to be getting closer and closer and if fortunes go his way, the former JASCAR short oval racer could be on the top step of the podium sooner than he might think. At the moment, all the signs look good!

Another name to keep in mind will be young Danish racer Magnus Kriklywi. Despite an strong qualifying performance at Brands Hatch, his fortunes took a nose dive in Race 1 after he skated into the Paddock Hill gravel trap out of what could have been a 2nd place finish. While raw pace definitely appears to be somewhere in the Race Car Consultants driver’s locker, being able to apply it mistake free is the next test and if he can manage that this weekend, he may just pick up his first silverware as a result.

As for the remainder of the field, it will be rather intriguing to see how the rest of our rookies fare here. Nathanael Hodgkiss, Alfie Glenie and Todd Garner will all use this second meeting to make further progress across their respective learning curves after cutting their teeth in Kent, while at the same time we’re delighted to welcome Abby Lock back to the grid for her first race of the season after debuting at the Donington Park finale last year. Illness kept her on the sidelines for the Brands Hatch opener, but being an interested spectator that weekend means that she’ll be fired up more than ever to get out there and show what she can do!

Scott Woodwiss

Next Race

Brands Hatch - 27th - 28th Jul 2019

Last Race

Cadwell Park 11th - 12th May 2019

Current Standings

Driver Accrued Points Adjusted Total
1 Olly Turner 296 204
2 Joel Wren 178 175
3 Alfie Glenie 240 168