MIXED FORTUNES FOR MEADOWS AT OULTON PARK OPENER Mike Meadows had mixed fortunes at the opening round of the British F3 International Series this weekend, with a National Class pole position for the second race as a high, and a fourth in...
MIXED FORTUNES FOR MEADOWS AT OULTON PARK OPENER
Mike Meadows had mixed fortunes at the opening round of the British F3 International Series this weekend, with a National Class pole position for the second race as a high, and a fourth in class finish in the first race, but the Banbury racer was taken out of the second race with substantial damage to his racecar, forcing retirement with less than a lap completed.
The NewNet Master Motorsport entry made a strong start to the weekend. Meadows was right on the pace in the first qualifying session, with his speed trap times showing that he was one of the hottest drivers on the track. At the end of qualifying for the first race the young Banbury driver had posted the third fastest lap time of the National class competitors. With an overall 23rd best lap of the 31 entrants, for the first of the two races Meadows started on the 12th row of the grid.
The second qualifying session saw Meadows improve on his performance to produce a lap which put him at the top of the National Class time sheet. The team had reviewed the data between the two qualifying sessions and made some small changes with the car, while Meadows analysed his sector times and using this information, was able to make substantial performance gains which his rivals couldn't match. Posting the 20th best lap time for second qualifying, Meadows' grid position was on the 10th row for the second race of the day at Oulton Park.
In the first race Meadows drove well off the grid and had risen to third in class on the track, but an incident ahead of him necessitated avoiding action which pushed him into the gravel, losing him two places. He crossed the line in a creditable fourth place.
The second race was a different story, with Meadows being hit from behind at the start, causing a chain reaction of incidents between the NewNet entry, with cars behind piling into Meadows' car, leaving the track littered with cars and debris that ended with the race being red-flagged. The damage to NewNet's car was substantial and he was unable to take the restart.
Meadows said after his weekend, "We had good pace all weekend and the first race should have resulted in a podium finish, but it didn't turn out that way. The second race was a disaster; I'm gutted that we weren't able to capitalise on our pole position. I just have to hold my head high, put this behind me and focus on the next race weekend now."