INTO THE UNKNOWN FOR FJC AT CADWELL PARK

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Who will lay claim to Cadwell Park on their first visit in their racing career? - Photo: James Roberts

After two exciting opening races, it's time for the teams and drivers in this season's Fiesta Junior Championship to head to Cadwell Park in Lincolnshire, a circuit that for all of our junior competitors is new territory all round.

The opening rounds at Brands Hatch saw a fascinating contest as it became clear that 4 drivers were already hitting the ground running in 2017. Having a season’s worth of experience each, it was James Hillery, Jack Davidson, James Waite and Nicholas Reeve that dominated the podium places in both races with Messrs Hillery and Davidson picking up their first circuit racing wins with one each. It’s the latter who leads the standings from the former heading here to Cadwell Park, with the young Scotsman determined to reinforce his position at the head of the table as he builds on his success.

That said, Hillery’s performances were impressive when you take into account the small size of his team as a privateer compared to the larger outfits. Rebounding from an awful spate of luck in 2016, the HillWood Motorsport team are now taking the fight to all-comers. As for Reeve and Waite, they have backing from Specialized Motorsport and Jam-Sport respectively, with the latter also running Davidson too. Reeve is already a race winner, while Waite scored a handful of podiums including two on his first weekend last year. Both will do all they can to muscle in on the burgeoning title fight.

Another sophomore driver in the field is Lochlan Bearman who went into the Brands Hatch weekend full of promise, but left feeling disappointed. Having taken a couple of podiums last season, Bearman has his sights firmly set on better results and will look to put the previous rounds behind him and move forwards. Perhaps Cadwell will provide a vast change in fortunes?

Of course, every new FJC season brings a wave of fresh faces into the mix with the best of the bunch is seemingly turning out to be Matt Greenwood, putting his season of junior racing experience from elsewhere to good use with a pair of strong results. Also in the mix with him was fellow Jam-Sport comrade Gus Burton, while Josh Hislop also used the opening weekend to develop his on-track skills. Other new names included Jamie-Lea Hawley, Olly Turner and Thomas Horton, the last of those 3 not here this weekend after damage sustained to his car.

Other names who made their return after appearing at the Brands Hatch finale last season will also be out in force to improve, with Josh Steed, Scott Cansdale and Warwick Daden all looking to carry on their development here this weekend.

Plus, in a late change of plans for this season, 2016 champion Harry Gooding made the unexpected announcement that he would be returning to the Championship to defend his title, potentially and assumedly aiming to become the first champion of a junior circuit racing series to do so. His title defence begins this weekend with a slightly different landscape to return to. Nevertheless, despite the absence of driving the car since Brands Hatch back in October last year, he's feeling confident that he'll be on the pace. You can find out more about his return in the news story HERE.

This will be the first time that any of our Junior drivers have tackled Cadwell Park and while it’s not a circuit utilised by any of the major championships that FJC’s graduates have progressed to, it’s still a venue that will teach them a lot about handling, car setup and technique. Overtaking isn’t easy here, but that won’t stop the Juniors from looking to hone their racecraft in the process. Who knows – the lessons learned here may very well make them stronger ahead of the rest of the season.

The Fiesta Junior Championship holds a reputation for being one of the most competitive, enjoyable and well established junior championships in British motorsport. Despite only being conceived in 2012, the list of alumni that have graduated through FJC have already reached the likes of the BTCC, the ToCA support package, British GT, Britcar, Mini Challenge, Ginettas and even the Lamborghini Super Trofeo, as well as those stepping up to the senior Fiesta Championship. Dedicated to giving 14-17 year old racers the chance to hone their skills on the UK’s best circuits in the most cost-effective way possible, it’s no wonder that FJC’s popularity has continued to rise year on year.

Scott Woodwiss

Next Race

Silverstone National - 19th - 20th Aug 2017

Last Race

Snetterton 300 15th - 16th Jul 2017

Current Standings

Driver Accrued Points Adjusted Total
1 Jack Davidson 239 238
2 Nicholas Reeve 258 232
3 James Waite 264 216