BLOMQVIST STORMS TO DOUBLE VICTORY AS TINCKNELL WRAPS UP WINTER TITLE Fortec Motorsport's Tom Blomqvist, son of rally legend Stig, produced two faultless drives in the 2009 Michelin Formula Renault UK Winter Cup at Northamptonshire's Rockingham...
BLOMQVIST STORMS TO DOUBLE VICTORY AS TINCKNELL WRAPS UP WINTER TITLE
Fortec Motorsport's Tom Blomqvist, son of rally legend Stig, produced two faultless drives in the 2009 Michelin Formula Renault UK Winter Cup at Northamptonshire's Rockingham Motor Speedway on Saturday, 7th November to become the youngest ever winner in the championship. The 15-year-old from Sweden, who joined the series late, took a clean sweep of the points with two wins and two fastest laps in the final rounds (three and four) of the one-make series.
The overall Winter Cup honours though belonged to CRS Racing's Harry Tincknell (Exeter) who followed up his two wins at Snetterton last weekend with two further podiums (third and second) to secure victory.
Hitech Junior Team drivers Marlon Stockinger (PHI) and Nick Yelloly (Solihull) picked up the remaining podium spots over the weekend with Stockinger producing a great drive in round three to secure second with Yelloly finishing third in round four.
The weekend also marked the last time the current tatuus-built Formula Renault UK chassis will be used following the arrival of a brand new car in 2010.
Blomqvist takes the double...
The final round of the series saw Tincknell qualify as pole-sitter with Blomqvist alongside him on the front row. As the lights went out for the start of the 15-lap race, it was Graduate Cup winner Tincknell who made the best start to lead from the youngster only for the Swedish driver to get the better of him through Yentwood. Yelloly meanwhile had been able to slip by into third as the field safely navigated the opening lap.
Blomqvist, who had looked very impressive all weekend, set about establishing a lead until Manor Competition's Robert Foster-Jones (Essex) made contact with the barrier on the exit to Pif Paf on lap five causing the Safety Car to be deployed before the race was eventually red flagged. With less than half the race distance complete, the round was re-started using the track positions to form the new grid.
With the re-started race reduced to seven laps, this time Blomqvist took the P1 spot and as the lights went out he made the most of his track position to lead from Tincknell and Yelloly before quickly establishing himself a lead.
Behind places were far less certain with Stockinger and Manor Competition's Thomas Hylkema (NED) having a great battle for fourth and fifth places with Fortec Motorsport's Alex Lynn (Essex) passing his team-mate Luke Wright (Dorset) at Deene to move inside the top 10.
Out in front, Blomqvist looked to be in a class of his own setting the fastest lap of the race -- a 1m 16.040s (91.84mph average) around the 1.94-mile circuit -- before taking the chequered flag and his second win of the day. Tincknell finished second to secure the title with Yelloly in third and team-mate Stockinger in fourth.
Blomqvist shines at Rockingham...
On a damp but trying track, round three of the Winter Cup saw Tincknell on pole with Blomqvist joining him on the front row. As the race got underway, Tincknell made a poor start dropping him down the order and allowing Blomqvist, who finished third in Formula Renault Sweden this year, to move into the lead by the end of the first lap.
Following a brief Safety Car period, racing resumed on lap three with Blomqvist once again making a good start. Stockinger was running in second with Tincknell in third.
Lap by lap Blomqvist continued to pull away in his Fortec Motorsport car and setting the fastest lap of the race after one-third race distance. With the top three places looking increasingly fixed, behind a great battle was developing for fourth and fifth places with Yelloly eventually getting the better of Hylkema. A few laps later Hylkema locked-up on the run-up to Deene dropping him further down the order and allowing Antel Motorsport's Dino Zamparelli (Bristol) to move into the top five.
The chequered flag though belonged to Blomqvist which he took with a cushion of almost six seconds over Stockinger who secured his first podium position of the year. Tincknell finished a frustrated third with Yelloly in fourth and Zamparelli in fifth.
Commenting on his performance at the weekend, Blomqvist said: "I got a good start in both races which helped and then it was a case of just putting in consistent lap times. I'm delighted with how well my first Formula Renault UK meeting has gone and hope to contest a full season with Fortec Motorsport in 2010."
Winter Cup champion Harry Tincknell said: "I struggled with my starts this weekend which cost me but I'm delighted with the overall win and how well my first season has gone in Formula Renault UK. Tom is certainly quick and will no doubt prove tricky competition in 2010 if he decides to race. I'm certainly hoping to compete next year and can't wait to start testing in the new car."
-credit: frenault uk