BRACE OF TOP 12 FINISHES FOR CARDOSO AT ULTRA-FAST THRUXTON
Ginetta Junior Championship rookies Pedro Cardoso and Harry Mailer each posted a brace of points finishes on their respective Thruxton debuts over the weekend, 3rd/4th May, with some competitive performances for leading squad Hillspeed.
Brazilian youngster Cardoso recorded a best result of ninth during race two, round six, at the daunting Hampshire track but was handed a costly seven second time penalty for an on-track misdemeanor which dropped him back to 12th position – matching his round five result. Pace-wise, Cardoso was quick with the eighth fastest lap time just 0.2 seconds shy of the best achieved by the eventual race winner.
Fellow 14-year-old Mailer, meanwhile, recorded a best finish of 16th position in the opening race on Saturday afternoon. Attempts to break into the top 15 on Sunday unfortunately went awry following an early spin in round six.
“Thruxton was always going to be a huge challenge for Pedro and Harry, it’s the fastest track in the country and neither were available for the official test in April”, commented Hillspeed’s Richard Ollerenshaw, “They both did a good job though and, most importantly, kept out of trouble and got some good race mileage under their belts.
“It’s unfortunate Pedro got the time penalty in race two as his pace warranted a top 10 finish at least, but he’s taken two consistent finishes. Harry wasn’t deterred by the challenge and brought the car home safely, it’s so easy to get into trouble at Thruxton so we’re pleased with the outcome.”
Beginning round five in 11th position, Cardoso put together a strong first lap to climb into the top eight but his great progress was halted at the end of the second tour when an unfortunate spin at Club Chicane dropped the Brazilian to 14th place.
Undeterred, Cardoso battled hard in the midfield to work his way back up the order and he ended the race in 12th position. Out of the chicane on the final lap, he nosed alongside Senna Proctor and almost pipped his rival on the line – just missing out by a mere 0.070 seconds.
Mailer, meanwhile, also had an eventful outing but 15th position marked an impressive showing on his first racing experience of Thruxton. Starting in 16th place, the Briton moved into 15th within a couple of laps but slipped back a spot where he remained to the flag.
In the live televised sixth round on Sunday, Cardoso produced impressive pace but a hard-fought ninth place finish ultimately became 12th when he was given a seven second time penalty. Starting the encounter in 11th position, he quickly climbed into the top 10 and by lap six had broken into the top eight. Slipping to ninth two laps from the end, the Hillspeed racer remained there to the flag.
Mailer moved up from 16th on the grid into the top 15 on the opening tour but an unfortunate spin a couple of laps later dropped him down to 19th position. Regaining his composure, the 14-year-old moved into 18th place on lap five and ended the encounter just a second shy of the car ahead.
Rounds seven and eight of the Ginetta Junior Championship season will take place at Oulton Park International Circuit in Cheshire over the weekend 7th/8th June. Before then, Hillspeed’s BRDC Formula 4 Championship squad will be back in action for the second event of its season on 17th/18th May at Brands Hatch Grand Prix Circuit in Kent.
Provisional 2014 Ginetta Junior Championship Standings (after Rd6):
14th Pedro Cardoso, 46pts; 18th Harry Mailer, 30pts