MEYRICK HARPOONED OUT OF CONTENTION Andy Meyrick went into round two of the UK Formula Ford Championship determined to make up for his misfortune in Easter Saturday's season opener, when contact on the opening lap consigned him to an eighth...
MEYRICK HARPOONED OUT OF CONTENTION
Andy Meyrick went into round two of the UK Formula Ford Championship determined to make up for his misfortune in Easter Saturday's season opener, when contact on the opening lap consigned him to an eighth place finish. Unfortunately for Meyrick, he would be knocked out of contention even more emphatically in the second part of the Oulton Park double header.
The Chester based driver was frustrated with his performance in qualifying, where he had been eighth fastest, but he made amends within yards of the startline, launching his Cliff Dempsey Racing Ray into fifth place as soon as the second race got underway. Although a tiny error at Old Hall corner next time around allowed Richard Tannahill to slip past, Meyrick tucked back in behind his Northern Irish rival and was confident of regaining the position. Unfortunately he would never get the chance to try, as the following Jonny Baker slewed into him at the Shell Hairpin.
"To be fair to Baker, he apologised to me as soon as he got out of the car, but that still doesn't make it alright," Meyrick said. "He told me that he had got sideways through the previous corner and lost control under braking. Personally, I think he was actually trying to make an overtaking move, but he was about 30 yards behind me so it was only ever going to be a lunge down the inside, there was no way he would have actually got past me.
"It's particularly disappointing because there wasn't a great deal wrong with my car after the incident -- it was just stuck in the gravel."
Meyrick was thoroughly downcast after the race, but a conversation with his experienced team boss Cliff Dempsey reminded Andy -- who had never raced before competing in regional Formula Ford 1600 in 2005 -- that he is still at a very early stage in his career, so should not let luckless weekends like his Oulton experience knock him back.
"As Cliff pointed out, the step that I'm taking this year is a massive one," Meyrick said. "This is a national championship, I'm up against top drivers, and I've got to be patient.
"When I signed up for the championship I knew it was going to be a two year project and that the most important thing this season was to learn as much as possible. But then testing went better than expected. My team-mate Peter Dempsey was clearly going to be the man to beat, and I was within a few tenths of his times, so that's where I expected to be at Oulton.
"Maybe I let the pressure get to me more than I should have. But if it hadn't been for that incident with Baker, the weekend could have had a very positive end, and that would have done a lot for my confidence. I just need to keep my head up, put this weekend behind me, work hard in testing, and focus on the positives."
Meyrick gets his chance to make up for the frustration of the season opener when the championship resumes at Donington Park on 20th-21st May.