Silverstone: Mark Fish Motorsport race report

Mark Fish Motorsport duo qualify for Monaco Grand Prix! Renaultsport Clio Trophy Round 2 Report: Silverstone British Clio Trophy stars Rick Pearson and Paul Lomax triumphed on home ground at Silverstone on Saturday, earning their places on the...

Mark Fish Motorsport duo qualify for Monaco Grand Prix!

Renaultsport Clio Trophy Round 2 Report: Silverstone

British Clio Trophy stars Rick Pearson and Paul Lomax triumphed on home ground at Silverstone on Saturday, earning their places on the Monaco Grand Prix Clio Trophy support race grid with sixteenth and twenty sixth place respectively.

Qualifying
Rick Pearson: 19th: 2'07"401
Paul Lomax: 29th: 2'10"295

Home hero Rick Pearson made a solid start to his race weekend with twentieth on the board in the first of the two qualifying sessions. Despite the weather conditions 'slowing' the track on Saturday morning, Pearson was up as high as tenth at one stage before settling at seventeenth at the end of the session. His aggregate times placed him nineteenth on the thirty two car grid.

A high speed accident at Magny Cours two weeks ago meant session one at Silverstone was the first chance Paul Lomax had to really get a feel for the Clio V6 in qualifying trim. The Edenbridge resident proved himself to be quick off the mark, setting the twenty eighth fastest time in session one before slipping back to thirty second in session two.

Race
Rick Pearson: 16th
Paul Lomax: 25th

With a top twenty placing the order of the day, the lead Mark Fish Motorsport Clio V6 of Rick Pearson made a strong getaway at the rolling start, using his superior knowledge of the Northamptonshire venue to great effect on lap one.

Ensconced in a safe sixteenth at the beginning of the second of fourteen laps, Pearson lost out on lap three and then again on lap four. Wary of the high tyre degradation suffered at Magny-Cours two weeks ago, the Briton nurtured his tyres in the early part of the race and was able to launch a fight-back in the latter stages.

While Pearson battled his way back through the mid-field, Paul Lomax made up for his tough initiation to the championship at Magny Cours with what was arguably one of the best drives of the race. With confidence running high thanks to a strong showing in first qualifying, Lomax powered his way through the thirty two car grid. Cheered on by the home crowd, he charged through the field, passing Monaco Engineering's Severino Nardozi and Team Start's Mariano Bellin on his way through into twenty-fifth.

Having outmanoeuvred German Oliver Freymuth, Pearson clawed his way onto the tail of ex-Touring Car driver, Ian Khan. Although Khan was trailing bodywork after a clash with another competitor earlier in the race, he was able to maintain a strong race pace. Despite closing to within two hundredths of a second, Pearson decided not to risk a passing manoeuvre in the final stages of the race and crossed the line a delighted sixteenth. Lomax meanwhile was just half a second away from a battle for twenty-fourth when the chequered flag fell.

Given their strong showings on home soil, both Rick Pearson and Paul Lomax have been confirmed as entrants for the Monaco Grand Prix Clio Trophy support race, to be held on the streets of Monte Carlo, Saturday May 26th.

Quotes:

Rick Pearson: "We never really got the car sorted in qualifying and so I started much further down the grid than I was hoping for. My plan for the race was to focus on staying out of trouble therefore guaranteeing automatic qualification for Monaco.

"I had a good race after saving my tyres in the early stages and was delighted to find how easy it was to catch and pass Freymuth.

"I'm absolutely delighted for the whole team that both Paul and have both qualified to support the Grand Prix in three weeks time. It's a fantastic opportunity and one that I'm looking forward to immensely."

Paul Lomax: "I was very satisfied with my race. Although it's only my second outing in the car I managed to finish in front of guys who've had several seasons in the Clio Trophy, and of course I'm delighted to have qualified for Monaco.

"I feel like I'm starting to get to grips with the car - which is very different to anything I've raced before - but we've still got a lot more work to do on set-up."

-mfm-

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About this article
Series General
Drivers Ian Khan , Rick Pearson , Mariano Bellin , Oliver Freymuth