Vernon ends FR BARC season with a flourish
Silverstone also hosted the finale of the Protyre Formula Renault BARC Championship in which Kieran Vernon secured his fourth podium of the campaign to conclude the season an excellent fifth in the driver standings, despite having missed the opening three races of the year.
Round 14 was the pick of the two for the Hillspeed racer ¡© qualifying on the front row, a mere 0.028 seconds shy of pole position, Vernon did unfortunately slip to third off the start and was then pushed back to fifth on lap two before mounting a determined recovery.
Profiting from a lap eight tangle between Chris Middlehurst and Macaulay Walsh, Vernon sliced back by at Brooklands to take third where he remained to the conclusion on lap 21; taking the flag just 0.9 seconds behind newly crowned champion Scott Malvern. In round 13, Vernon finished seventh after a good drive through from 11th on the grid.
Team-mate Struan Moore climbed from 18th on the grid in race one to a season-best 13th place on only his second weekend in single-seaters. Gaining a spot on lap one when David Wagner crashed out, Moore gradually worked his way up the order to finish just 0.9 seconds shy of the top 12.
In race two, he again made good progress by slicing his way through from 24th on the grid into 17th place ahead of a number of more experienced Formula Renault BARC competitors. Moore©ös pace was impressive in both encounters, but especially the first in which he lapped just 0.5 seconds outside the fastest lap of all.
Championship newcomer Matt Rao, making his ‘slicks and wings©ö debut just one week on from winning the ‘Duratec Class©ö title in the Dunlop MSA Formula Ford Championship of Great Britain, delivered an impressive account of himself in the first race on Saturday.
Qualifying 21st on the grid, within 0.9 seconds of pole position, Rao made good progress early in the race and took 16th just after mid-distance where he remained to the flag. In round 14, the series rookie raced impressively from 20th on the grid to climb into the top 14 by the end of lap eight but on the 16th tour he was tagged into retirement by Max Robinson at Becketts.
"It was absolutely incredible to get Kieran up there on the podium in the final round of the BARC season, especially off the back of Pepe winning such an incredible race in the Ginettas, added Ollerenshaw, Kierans had a great season, with hardly any testing he's managed to produce some fantastic results which shows his quality."
"Struan is getting quicker all the time and has impressed us on only his second weekend in the Renault, he's certainly a fantastic prospect for next year and Matt did everything we could have asked on his debut ¡© he was very unlucky in race two, just one of those things unfortunately.
While the Protyre Formula Renault BARC season has now concluded, rounds 19 and 20 of the Ginetta Junior Championship, the final two races of the season, will take place at Brands Hatch Grand Prix Circuit two weeks from now on 20th/21st October.
2012 Ginetta Junior Championship Driver Standings (after Rd18 ¡© inc. drop scores):
4th Pepe Massot, 342; 14th Freddie Lee, 64pts
Final 2012 Protyre Formula Renault BARC Championship Driver Standings (inc. drop scores):
5th Kieran Vernon, 236pts; 15th Jacob Nortoft, 87pts; 25th Marcus Allen, 31pts; 28th Struan Moore, 21pts; 32nd Matt Rao, 6pts