UK: Manor Competition Donington II preview

Manor Competition heads to its home circuit, Donington Park, next weekend for the 17th and 18th rounds of the 2007 Formula Renault UK season and hopes are high of a great team performance from the crack Nottinghamshire squad. The New Ollerton ...

Manor Competition heads to its home circuit, Donington Park, next weekend for the 17th and 18th rounds of the 2007 Formula Renault UK season and hopes are high of a great team performance from the crack Nottinghamshire squad.

The New Ollerton outfit, which goes into the event on 8th/9th September on the back of a superb debut showing in the Formula Renault Northern European Cup at Germany's Nurburgring last weekend, is looking forward to its return to Donington Park for what will undoubtedly be the biggest meeting of the year, supporting the World Series by Renault.

With over 100,000 enthusiasts expected to attend, the race weekend will be a fantastic spectacle and with Alexander Sims having claimed his maiden single-seater race victory at Donington's National Circuit configuration in mid-July, both driver and team are bidding to repeat the result on the world-famous Grand Prix layout.

As Manor's sole entry in the Formula Renault NEC last weekend, Sims made a superb debut by qualifying in fourth and fifth position for the two races. Although a broken steering rack forced a retirement in the opening encounter, the 19-year-old raced well to leave the Nurburgring with a top five result in race two.

"Nurburgring was a great weekend, we really enjoyed it and Alexander made some good progress", reflected team boss Tony Shaw, "He's gaining more confidence each time he sits in the car and is starting to become a real force which we always knew would happen with time and experience. He stands a great chance of podiums at Donington."

Excellent performances aren't the sole preserve of Peterborough racer Sims however, with Kris Loane and Alex Morgan having both made impressive strides during recent rounds. In particular, the last two race meetings at Snetterton and Brands Hatch saw both drivers begin to come of age in single-seaters.

At Donington next weekend, Loane and Morgan hope to build on their respective season's best results -- the Northern Irishman's being fifth position during round 13 at Snetterton, which also earned him Driver of the Day status, and Welshman Morgan's a top seven showing in the same race.JJShaw added: "Everyone is happy, buoyant and working hard and we'll certainly do our best to achieve some excellent results -- hopefully we'll hit the front. Considering Kris' lack of experience he's starting to show some much more experienced drivers the way which is great to see and his pace isn't far away from the top three.

"Alex enjoyed a good run at Snetterton and at Brands he did very well, especially when taking into account the wet conditions in which he's had some bad accidents in the past. To have such a good showing and to have gained such confidence is brilliant. All three drivers are aiming for a strong run at Donington, we're looking forward to it."

Manor Competition will return to the track this Wednesday, 5th September, for official testing at Donington Park Grand Prix Circuit with qualifying for the 17th and 18th rounds of the season scheduled to take place on Saturday, 8th September, at 13.15.

Both races are timetabled for Sunday, 9th September, with round 17 beginning the day's action at 09.00 and round 18 expected to follow at 16.00.

-credit: mc

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Series Formula Renault
Drivers Alexander Sims