SIXTH WIN OF SEASON FOR MANOR COMPETITION AT SILVERSTONE Scottish sensation Lewis Williamson produced a tremendous performance at Silverstone National Circuit over the weekend, 21st/22nd August, to claim his third win of the year -- Manor ...
SIXTH WIN OF SEASON FOR MANOR COMPETITION AT SILVERSTONE
Scottish sensation Lewis Williamson produced a tremendous performance at Silverstone National Circuit over the weekend, 21st/22nd August, to claim his third win of the year -- Manor Competition's sixth -- with an impeccable drive during the rescheduled fifth round of the season.
With three races packed into the weekend at the 1.64-mile Northamptonshire track due to the abandonment of round five earlier in the season because of atrocious weather, the Silverstone event was certainly busy but the New Ollerton team made the most of it with additional podium finishes for Ollie Millroy, Will Stevens and Williamson again.
While the Golspie-based driver headed home Manor Competition team-mate Stevens by over six seconds during the first of the triple-header races with a thoroughly dominant performance, in the third encounter Williamson once again made it onto the podium with a deserved second place.
Realistically he should have climbed the rostrum in all three races but contact on lap 19 while running in second, and close to challenging for the lead, dropped him to an eventual finish of fourth. Even so, Williamson has moved into second in the championship just three points ahead of Stevens with Millroy sixth and Dutch team-mate Thomas Hylkema just six points shy of the top 10.
Williamson said: "Saturday's race was absolutely awesome, to win again was fantastic and the car felt absolutely perfect -- the team has done an unbelievable job this weekend. I think we had the pace to challenge for the win in race two, the contact was unfortunate but fourth was still a good finish. To then be second in the third race was another really good result -- what a weekend!"
The rescheduled fifth round took place on Saturday afternoon and after making an electric getaway from pole position, Williamson scorched away untroubled to a 6.5 second victory with Stevens taking second place for a deserved one-two. While Williamson was able to pull away at the front, Stevens had to fight very hard to keep title rivals Harry Tincknell and Tama's Pa'l Kiss at bay.
Millroy produced a great race to climb from the sixth row into fifth at the finish, the bulk of the work done on lap one where he managed to scythe his way through into the top seven. For Hylkema, his race was realistically over on lap three when Tom Blomqvist made contact with the rear of his car at Luffield, forcing both cars off. After an enforced pit-stop, Hylkema rejoined and finished in 14th spot.
Looking at the grid order for Sunday's opener, round 13, the Manor Competition drivers had their work cut out with Williamson starting in eighth, Stevens in 11th, Millroy in 13th and Hylkema in 15th place as a result of a tricky damp qualifying session on Saturday morning.
At the start Williamson rocketed into the top four with a superb opening lap but behind, Stevens hit trouble at the first corner when he was pitched into a spin. Rejoining in last position, the Oxshott driver hoped to make reasonable headway but after getting trapped behind the Safety Car when it picked him up incorrectly on lap three rather than the leader, he lost all chance of a decent result.
The deployment of the Safety Car came because of Riki Christodoulou's stranded car at the exit of Brooklands. His spin on lap two led to an instant retirement for Claygate racer Millroy who clipped Christodoulou's car while trying his best to avoid the FR 2.0 as it rolled back into his path.
Hylkema, who turned 22-years-of-age on Friday, managed to avoid the chaos and threaded his way through the order nicely, into the top 10 by lap eight and through to eighth a few laps later. Stevens, meanwhile, finished in 11th place after a very trying race.
At the front, Williamson took third on lap eight with a superb move around the outside of Marlon Stockinger at Brooklands and after pressuring second placed Nick Yelloly he took second position through Maggotts with another classy manoeuvre. Two corners later though, Yelloly dived back up the inside at Brooklands on a damp piece of track and knocked Williamson into a spin -- he eventually finished fourth.
Round 14 produced another double podium for the team and featured all four Manor Competition cars in the top six. Williamson took second place after getting the better of Millroy and Stevens, those two finishing third and fourth respectively, while Hylkema fought his way towards the front with an excellent drive from 13th on the grid into sixth position.
"It's been a very strong weekend for us", said Manor Competition co-owner Sarah Shaw, "All four of the guys did a great job and other than a bit of bad luck with some contact Lewis could have been looking at two wins. He performed very well all weekend and it was obviously great to see Will and Ollie on the podium too, they both showed fantastic pace.
"The second race was unfortunate with Ollie and Will both having problems but Thomas came through well in eighth from 15th on the grid and he did the same great job in race three to take a top six from 13th at the start. It was a strong end to the weekend for him and proof again of what he can do if he's able to get qualifying right."
Next on the calendar for Manor Competition is a visit to Williamson's home circuit, Knockhill in Fife, for the team's first race meeting at the track since Formula Renault UK last raced there in 2005. The 15th and 16th rounds of the season will take place a fortnight from now, 4th/5th September.
2010 Michelin Formula Renault UK Championship driver standings: 2nd Lewis Williamson, 333pts; 3rd Will Stevens, 330pts; 6th Ollie Millroy, 235pts; 11th Thomas Hylkema, 137pts
2010 Michelin Formula Renault UK Championship entrant standings: 1st Manor Competition, 698pts