British motor racing star Jeremy Metcalfe raced to a pair of excellent victories and three other podium results on his way to fifth overall in the Formula Renault UK Championship this year; a season which marks the Hampshire sensation's last in...
British motor racing star Jeremy Metcalfe raced to a pair of excellent victories and three other podium results on his way to fifth overall in the Formula Renault UK Championship this year; a season which marks the Hampshire sensation's last in the one-make category.
Heading for pastures new in 2008 after three seasons in Formula Renault UK, the Fleet based 19-year-old has a variety of options open to him next year, both in single-seaters and sportscars, and at this stage there are no firm plans in place.
Jeremy's association with Formula Renault UK first started in 2005 on the back of a truly outstanding karting career both at home and abroad. After a switch to Team AKA for that year's Winter Championship, he achieved his maiden category pole position and took his first race victory in cars.
Although unable to add to his win tally during the 2006 main season, the BillChaser backed racer still enjoyed a fantastic year taking four podiums on his way to fifth overall in the driver standings as an AKA driver
Further success came after emerging victorious in the battle for the Donington Park Racing Association Club (DPRAC) Cup and being named one of just six finalists in the prestigious McLaren Autosport BRDC Award. He was also put forward for consideration for the MSA 'Race Elite' programme.
Heading into the 2007 Formula Renault UK campaign, the year began in the best possible way for Jeremy when he was named a British Racing Drivers' Club 'Rising Star' just prior to re-signing with the re-branded AKA Cobra squad.
The on-track season started incredibly well, Jeremy scorching to pole position for the opening round of the campaign at Brands Hatch Indy Circuit and going on to claim the win with a determined performance. Backed up by a top six result in round two, the next pair of races at Rockingham would see him emerge with a weekend's best of fourth spot.
"It was fantastic to win the first race of the year", reflected Jeremy, "I don't think we found as much speed in the car as we perhaps could have but I was confident we'd hold on for the win from pole. You always want to start a championship on a winning note."
Jeremy's home venue, Thruxton Circuit in Hampshire, provided the third race meeting of the season and saw the Loughborough University student make a welcome return to the podium with third place during round six.
At Croft in North Yorkshire, the venue of his first ever Formula Renault UK race win, the BRDC Rising Star had an unfortunate retirement from the first encounter but went on to record a top seven result in the next outing.
Another retirement would then follow during the first of two races at Oulton Park Island Circuit but in the next race, round 10, he secured an excellent win, his second of the year, with a faultless, masterly performance.
"Being back on the top step of the podium at Oulton Park was terrific", said Jeremy, "I really enjoyed the race and I think we proved when we have a car that's working well, I can win. It certainly felt a long time between the Brands win and the Oulton one!"
Seventh place at Donington Park in mid-July during the 11th round of the season proved to be Jeremy's best result of the weekend but he was soon back on the podium the next time out at Snetterton, third place his reward for a simply breathtaking drive in round 14 from ninth on the grid.
The second visit of the year to Brands Hatch Indy Circuit saw the Banking & Finance student again climb onto the podium with third position in round 16 and then, at the biggest meeting of the season at Donington Park's Grand Prix Circuit, he recorded top seven and top five finishes in front of a combined weekend crowd of 135,000 spectators.
Jeremy returned home to Hampshire for the season finale, rounds 19 and 20 at Thruxton, and he took a reverse of the Donington GP results with fifth place in the opening encounter and seventh position in the last race of the campaign -- his final outing in a Formula Renault UK car.
"We didn't end our last season in Formula Renault UK the way I wanted to but taking into account the problems and bad luck we encountered during the year, finishing fifth in the championship with a couple of wins and some other podiums wasn't too bad", he said.
Metcalfe impressive on Porsche Carrera Cup GB debut In between the second Brands Hatch event in August and the World Series by Renault supporting Donington Park races in September, Jeremy made his first ever appearance in a sportscar during the 17th and 18th rounds of the Porsche Carrera Cup GB series at Knockhill in Scotland.
As part of his prize for being a finalist in the 2006 McLaren Autosport BRDC Award, the teenage ace was given the opportunity by Porsche GB to drive the championship's VIP guest car at Knockhill and he certainly raised a few eyebrows with his pace and ability.
From 10th on the grid in the first race he climbed to seventh by lap two before an unfortunate retirement but he did post a highly impressive fifth fastest race lap. In race two, Jeremy finished in the top eight and on the final lap he set his best time of the entire weekend, less than four 10ths of a second outside the outright quickest lap.
"Driving the Porsche was an awesome experience", commented Jeremy, "I was very grateful to Porsche GB for giving me the opportunity. We improved throughout the weekend and I'm happy we did a pretty good job. Porsche Carrera Cup GB is definitely something we're considering for 2008."