MILLROY CLAIMS FIRST WIN AS MANOR SECURE TRIO OF PODIUMS New Ollerton-based Michelin Formula Renault UK Championship team Manor Competition enjoyed a thoroughly successful visit to Snetterton in Norfolk over the weekend, 7th/8th August, after ...
MILLROY CLAIMS FIRST WIN AS MANOR SECURE TRIO OF PODIUMS
New Ollerton-based Michelin Formula Renault UK Championship team Manor Competition enjoyed a thoroughly successful visit to Snetterton in Norfolk over the weekend, 7th/8th August, after taking a total of three podium finishes and victory in round 11 with category rookie Ollie Millroy.
Extending the team's lead in the entrant's championship and also closing in on the top of the driver standings with podium finisher Will Stevens, the annual trip to East Anglia proved to be a glittering one and the squad now heads to Silverstone in two weeks, 21st/22nd August, in high spirits.
"It's been a fantastic weekend for us, we're all over the moon to have seen Ollie take his first win and to have had three of our four drivers on the podium over the course of the event isn't a bad return at all -- we're very pleased", said Manor Competition co-owner Tony Shaw.
Millroy's weekend started perfectly during round 11 qualifying on Saturday after securing his maiden pole position start in Formula Renault UK with a time of 1m05.535 seconds (107.22mph) in tricky, drying conditions. Surrey neighbour Stevens almost matched his team-mate with a time just 0.034 seconds slower so Manor locked-out the front row for the first Snetterton race.
Scotland's Lewis Williamson, who has won two races so far this season, qualified seventh on the grid for round 11 while Dutch team-mate Thomas Hylkema was ninth quickest, just under 0.2 seconds further adrift.
At the start of the opening encounter, Millroy made a superb getaway to lead and opened up a substantial gap of two seconds over Stevens by the start of lap three. As the race progressed the team-mates did close up, but Millroy had plenty in hand thanks to his tremendous start and he eased to his first race victory by 1.1 seconds.
Speaking on his win, Millroy said: "The plan was to get a good start and I just had to get a gap over the first five or six laps before looking after the tyres. It's obviously great to win and with Will on the podium as well it's a great result for the team."
Stevens' second place was his sixth podium of the campaign but he had to work hard during the closing stages to defend from Nick Yelloly who took the chequered flag just 0.7 seconds shy. For Williamson, a superb pass on Tom Blomqvist at Coram Curve on lap three lifted him into the top six but he wasn't able to make any further headway.
Hylkema, meanwhile, was forced to retire in dramatic fashion on the final lap when a blow out pitched him off the circuit. Spinning into retirement as he headed through Riches for the last time, the incident capped a tough race for the Dutchman having earlier been on the receiving end of wheel-to-wheel contact at the Esses.
In round 12 qualifying, Millroy, Stevens and Williamson were all very evenly matched and as such they posted the third, fourth and fifth fastest times. Hylkema was within half a second of the top five but such is the competitiveness of Formula Renault UK, he ended with the 12th best lap.
Williamson enjoyed the best run in round 12 on Sunday afternoon by rising from fifth on the grid to pass both Millroy and Stevens to take his fourth podium of the campaign. Up to fourth past Stevens early on, by lap three the team-mates were all overlapping and dramatically ran three abreast down Revett Straight.
With the trio all giving each other racing room and driving sensibly, Williamson emerged in third place ahead of Stevens with Millroy slipping to fifth and that's how the order stayed to the finish on lap 18.
Hylkema made a very good start to climb into ninth by lap two -- a gain of three positions -- and a race long duel ensued with championship returnee Riki Christodoulou. Under immense pressure lap after lap, the Manor star managed to hold on to take eighth place in the end just 0.3 seconds clear.
To compensate for the abandonment of the fifth round of the Michelin Formula Renault UK Championship at a rain-lashed Brands Hatch in early May, three races will be held during the next event at Silverstone National Circuit on 21st/22nd August.
The original grid for the round five race is still expected to apply meaning it will be another all Manor Competition front row for the rescheduled encounter with Williamson on pole and Stevens alongside. Hylkema will line-up in fifth position on the grid with Millroy starting in 12th place.
2010 Michelin Formula Renault UK Championship driver standings: 2nd Will Stevens, 270pts; 3rd Lewis Williamson, 251pts; 6th Ollie Millroy, 190pts; 13th Thomas Hylkema, 98pts
2010 Michelin Formula Renault UK Championship entrant standings: 1st Manor Competition, 549pts