Snookered by the Safety Car

2021 Club Enduro Championship.
Round 6, Oulton Park International.

We headed to Oulton Park for the final round of the 750 Motor Club’s Club Enduro championship. Alex and I had already sewn up class C, but there was still an overall championship too. It basically boils down to which class winner dominates their class most. We had chalked up three wins form the five races, but the class A car of Rob Baker and Carl Swift had done slightly better and we couldn’t beat them.

So, we arrived looking for a fun race weekend and hopefully another trophy to finish off the season. However, it was a challenge, to say the least.

During testing, the engine blew. Our options were to either go home, or fight to get in the race. We chose the latter, so Dad and I drove over to near Donington Park to collect a new one, while Alex and the others started removing the old one. We finished up after midnight and while a late night engine change on Friday isn’t ideal, everyone pulled together fantastically.

Qualifying was a bit of a voyage into the unknown, but the car worked without issue and we got into the race, albeit 8th in class and 35th overall.

In the race Alex was making brilliant progress through the field and was up to third place when the safety car came out. It was just too early for our fuel strategy though and while our competitors pitted we had to stay on track. We were able to pit near the end of the safety car period, but after being held at the end of the pit lane we ended up losing a lap and with it the chance of a podium finish.

So not the best end to the season, but the car worked well and Oulton is always a joy to drive!

I’d like to say a huge thanks to Alex for inviting me along to be his team mate this year. It’s been amazing and we’ve all enjoyed the challenges longer endurance races bring.

We will be team mates one more time this year at Brands Hatch, for the finale of the BRSCC Mazda MX-5 SuperCup at the end of the month.