Father and son set to grace circuit at Croft
MOTOR SPORT PAUL HORTON
MACCLESFIELD’S Perez Perez aims to start where he finished this weekend when he goes to Croft race circuit to compete in the next round of the Simpson Race Products Ginetta Junior Championship
Croft will be another milestone in the Perez motorsport history books as both Perez and his Father race in different Ginetta races
Father Steve Perez, 2014 BTRDA Gold Star Rally Champion and chairman of Chesterfield based drinks brand development business GLOBAL BRANDS LTD, will drive the bigger Amigos sponsored Ginetta GT55 race car in Protyre Motorsport Ginetta GT5 Challenge.
Perez was in high spirits after his latest race weekend at Oulton Park just over a week ago in the ever popular race series contested by 14 to 17 year-old racers.
Perez, 16 years old and a student at Kings School in Macclesfield, travelled to his local and favourite circuit after having some misfortune in his last two rounds at Donington Park and Thruxton during May.
Perez was determined as ever and even more so in front of a local crowd to make the red hot and sunny weekend a success.
After a fantastic start to his weekend on the Friday in free practice he ended the day fourth fastest with a time of 1:44.144s, only 0.532 seconds behind fastest man and leader of the championship Stuart Middleton and was topping speeds over 76mph.
In qualifying, he got a good early lap in, seeing him go pole for at least the next ten minutes only to drop to a respectable third and finishing the session in fourth out of the 20 contenders.
Race one, to Perez’s delight, saw him get promoted from a second row start to front row after Tom Wooder received a five place grid penalty at Thruxton after contact with Stuart Middleton.
As the lights went out the battle commenced, seeing Perez get a good start and maintaining second place and on the tail of leader Tregurtha and soon challenging him for the lead. A late brake put Perez in his team JHR Developments Ginetta G40 race car down to third and a good battle commenced as Middleton leader of the race series was putting pressure on Perez.
This saw some fantastic driving from Perez to hold Middleton off with some lovely clean swapping of places on every corner of the circuit.
By half race distance the pressure was on and Perez and Middleton were side by side, Middleton taking the advantage and taking third place off Perez. This wasn’t the end Perez started pushing Middleton to the limit with a move on the inside, Perez running wide and having to settle with fourth place after such a close race and missing out on the podium, but his best ever race finish.
After race one Perez said: “This was my best race I have ever driven, having just missed a podium after such a close battle I am really pleased with fourth place.”
With Perez happy with the weekend up top that point, he was to try and do better in his next race
A second row position awaited him for race two of the weekend, that saw him have a brilliant start, a brave move into turn one saw him in third position. In the next two laps Perez was on the back of Charlie Fagg like a rash, by lap six Perez dropped to fourth after a manoeuvre by Middleton, shortly after both of them had a coming together and a spin for Perez sent to the back of the field and he finished the race 12th.
Afterwards Perez commented: “I had another great start but unfortunately the spin set me back, I made some back up not enough wanted to be.”
Peres leaves Oulton Park with 31 points from the weekend’s races and in 16th position in the championship with 65 points, his team JHR Developments are fourth in the Team Championship
Croft race Circuit in North Yorkshire is next up on the calendar this weekend
He was asked about his thoughts of going to Croft this weekend
“Qualifying is everything, we almost did it at Donington and a pole at Thruxton, I have come out good at Oulton and look forward to Croft this weekend.”
He added: “We have three races at Croft and the circuit is quite abrasive and I have tested here recently, my team JHR Developments have done a great job to the car after the minor hick ups at the start of the season.” We all live and learn
“Croft is another race and another opportunity.”
Perez was asked about Father and Son both racing in different events at the weekend and having a laugh said: “I’m sure he will be doing some learning off me for a change, it would be good to see him get a nice Father’s Day gift of a win at Croft.”
The end of the Ginetta Junior season is at the beginning of October and there is still a long road ahead for Perez to show us what he is made of.