PROCESSIONAL BRANDS RACES DO METCALFE NO FAVOURS Hampshire teenager Jeremy Metcalfe left Brands Hatch Indy Circuit this afternoon disappointed not to have retained third position in the championship standings, a brace of processional Formula ...
PROCESSIONAL BRANDS RACES DO METCALFE NO FAVOURS
Hampshire teenager Jeremy Metcalfe left Brands Hatch Indy Circuit this afternoon disappointed not to have retained third position in the championship standings, a brace of processional Formula Renault UK races limiting what he was able to achieve.
After struggling with both understeer and oversteer in qualifying on Saturday, Jeremy was always likely to face an uphill struggle in today's 17th and 18th rounds of the season and so it proved with genuine overtaking opportunities almost non-existent throughout the 24-car field.
Starting the first of the day's encounters in seventh position, the AKA Lemac ace maintained the place off the line but his car didn't begin to offer its true pace until the middle of the race.
By lap 15, Jeremy started to close on team-mate Patrick Hogan and as the race entered its final stages a slight opportunity did look as though it may present itself to the Fleet teenager, Hogan making a bid to pass fifth-placed Sutton on lap 22 after the latter ran wide under pressure at Druids Hairpin.
Contact between the pair allowed Jeremy to get as close as he had been all race but a clear-cut overtaking chance it wasn't and the BillChaser-backed star was forced to settle for seventh position at the chequered flag.
For round 18 Jeremy lined up ninth on the grid and, as in the day's opening race, his starting position was where he would remain throughout the 24 laps.
Frustrated to finish both races outside the top six, Jeremy is now focused on ending the season on a high at Silverstone National Circuit, his favourite track, in three week's time.
"It's disappointing to have had such a low-key weekend", said Jeremy, "Qualifying was always going to make the difference and so it proved. In the first race we had chronic understeer but in Formula Renault races at this circuit it's very unlikely you're going to make up places, so we have to be satisfied to finish where we started.
"I was disappointed to finish ninth in the second race but that's where we qualified so there was nothing we could do. You have to qualify strongly at Brands Indy to stand any chance in the races and we didn't get that right this weekend."
He added: "There are still two races left though and I think of Silverstone as perhaps my best track so I'm really looking forward to the last two rounds there and confident we can end the season on a high."
The high-point this weekend for Jeremy was the presentation of the Donington Park Racing Association Club (DPRAC) Cup, his prize for scoring the most points of any British driver during the four Formula Renault UK races which were held at Donington earlier in the season.
Joining a list of winners including current AKA Lemac driver-coach Kelvin Burt and sportscar ace Jamie Campbell-Walter, Jeremy will hold on to the prestigious trophy for a period of 12 months.
Looking ahead now to the season finale at Silverstone National Circuit on 14th/15th October, the series front-runner is fully focused on ending his campaign with a return to the podium and will be battling hard to add to his maiden Formula Renault UK race victory which he achieved during the 2005 Winter Championship at Croft.