CHAMPIONSHIP TOP SIX FOR HERRON AFTER FIRST TWO ROUNDS Northern Ireland's Andrew Herron rescued a solid ninth place result during the second round of the 2009 ELF Renault Clio Cup at Brands Hatch Indy Circuit yesterday, Sunday, 5th April, to add...
CHAMPIONSHIP TOP SIX FOR HERRON AFTER FIRST TWO ROUNDS
Northern Ireland's Andrew Herron rescued a solid ninth place result during the second round of the 2009 ELF Renault Clio Cup at Brands Hatch Indy Circuit yesterday, Sunday, 5th April, to add to the deserved race one podium he achieved during Saturday afternoon's season-opening encounter.
Taking a total of 37 points away from the first weekend of the new season, the 20-year-old is sixth overall in the driver standings and is now looking forward to the next two rounds of the campaign at Thruxton Circuit in Hampshire on 24th/25th April where he is aiming to really kick-start his title bid.
Lining up eighth on the grid for round two -- which was screened live across the UK on ITV4 -- Andrew got away very well indeed at the start and immediately made a place on the run to Paddock Hill Bend.
After a short Safety Car period, following an accident involving a couple of cars at Druids Hairpin on the opening tour, the action got back underway on lap five and the Dromore-based racer tried to get on terms with Dave Newsham ahead. Right with Newsham and Lee Pattison into lap six, Andrew looked quicker than his rivals but there just wasn't the room to make a pass.
At Graham Hill Bend on lap six though, Andrew's car slid wide as he negotiated the corner and this allowed three rivals to get ahead. Running in 10th position now, the Brian Herron Contracts-backed star moved back into ninth place at the expense of Stephen Tyldsley on lap eight at Druids and that's where he remained to the chequered flag on lap 19.
Try as he might to pass Alex Osborne ahead, there simply wasn't the opportunity to make a clean move and so Andrew settled for ninth place and 12 points to add to his championship total.
"I was hoping to come away with two podiums this weekend as I was happy with my race pace but, unfortunately, I didn't get a good enough second lap in qualifying which made the second race more difficult than it needed to be", explained Andrew, "It's such a short track and one which is very difficult to pass on so I knew I had to make a good start in the second race.
"I got away quite well and did gain a place but going into Graham Hill Bend I put a wheel off which sent me wide and that made me lose a few positions. After that it was so hard trying to gain places cleanly with everyone being so close, even if you're two or three 10ths of a second quicker than the guy in front it's almost impossible to get past if they don't make a mistake."
He added: "Hopefully this will be one of my worst results of the year, you're allowed to drop two rounds so I'm hoping we can now start to string together a good run of podiums, and hopefully wins, over the remainder of the season to mount a sustained fight for the championship."
Andrew now returns home to Co. Down with a three-week break ahead of him until the next event on the 2009 race calendar. Rounds three and four of the championship will be held at Thruxton Circuit in Hampshire on Saturday, 25th April, and Sunday, 26th April.