HERRON AIMING FOR WINTER CUP GLORY AT CROFT
Northern Ireland's Andrew Herron has high hopes of fighting for the 2007 ELF Renault Clio Cup Winter Championship title at Croft Circuit in North Yorkshire tomorrow, Saturday, 10th November, with just nine points the difference between the JHR Developments ace and series leader Niki Lanik heading into the final two rounds of the campaign.
Ahead of rounds three and four of the championship, the 19-year-old from Dromore in Co. Down produced the fourth fastest time during official testing today with a best lap of 1m 32.881 seconds (82.43mph).
Posting his best time during the third and final session of the day, Andrew spent the opening period of testing getting readjusted to the circuit and although not happy with his performance in the second session, the Brian Herron Contracts-supported star made amends during session three with some excellent laps.
Having secured a brace of podium finishes at Donington Park National Circuit last Saturday during the first weekend of the Winter Championship, Andrew is well placed to challenge for the title tomorrow at Croft and he's certainly confident he'll be a contender after today's test.
He commented: "We spent the first session just getting used to the circuit again and then in session two I didn't produce a good time as I was overdriving. In the last session we went out and lapped just two 10ths of a second off the pace which I was quite pleased with. The important thing for me is I know where I can gain more time.
"I showed in the last session we're there or thereabouts so I'm feeling quite confident for tomorrow. It was really cold today, especially during the first session this morning, so with qualifying starting at nine o'clock tomorrow it could take a while to get the tyres up to temperature. Hopefully we'll be ok and able to challenge for the front row of the grid."
After a fantastic see-saw battle with championship leader Niki Lanik during the first of the two Donington Park races last Saturday, Andrew knows the Austrian will be the man to beat this weekend but he is also fully aware of the pace of both Alex MacDowall and the reigning SEAT Cupra Championship Class R Champion Harry Vaulkhard.
"Niki and MacDowall are the two drivers I need to concentrate on most with regard to the championship", added the JHR ace, "As far as the races go, Vaulkhard should be right there at the front too and Aron Smith is racing this weekend as well so he'll be quick. I know what I have to do though tomorrow and I'm confident we'll be fighting for wins."
Qualifying for the third and fourth rounds of the 2007 ELF Renault Clio Cup Winter Championship will take place at 09.00 tomorrow, Saturday, 10th November, with the first race set to get underway at 11.00 and the final round of the series expected to follow at approximately 13.45.