TREGURTHA JUMPS AHEAD IN TITLE RACE
HHC Motorsport driver stars as false starts cause confusion
‘Jumped start’ were two very common words at Knockhill last weekend for the Ginetta Juniors. Four frontrunning drivers were hit with penalties for this reason in race two – and they had a significant impact on the result of a crazy race.
Seb Perez was leading Stuart Middleton at the start of a frenetic encounter when drivethrough penalties were dished out to the duo for over-eager starts. As they continued to fight, with Perez forcing Middleton off the track on lap three, the real leader was Daniel Harper.
But he too was embroiled in a ferocious battle with Will Tregurtha that continued even after Seb Priaulx had dived past both of them in the same manoeuvre with two laps to go. Their fight eventually ended with them both going off at Clark’s on the penultimate lap. This appeared to leave a disbelieving Priaulx with his first ever win from Geri Nicosia and Harper.
But that had all changed the following morning. Instead it was Nicosia who took his maiden win with Dave Wooder and Tom Wood completing the podium. It transpired Priaulx and Harper had both misjudged their getaways – while Perez didn’t and was incorrectly penalised ( see Racing News).
That wasn’t the end of the jumped starts, however, as poleman Lewis Brown was also guilty in the finale.
This meant Tregurtha’s move on Connor Grady into the hairpin turned out to be the race-defining pass as the pair finished first and second. Nicosia took another podium after more drama when Wood spun and Middleton and Perez collided trying to avoid him.
Despite this, Middleton fought back past Jordan Collard and Wooder to claim fourth.
Another two words that were common in Scotland were ‘maiden win’ as Perez joined Nicosia (and very briefly Priaulx) in the winner’s circle with a commanding performance in the opener.
With Priaulx making a poor start from pole, Perez shot into the lead and was untroubled to the flag. His margin over Middleton was 4.5s – gargantuan in Ginetta Junior terms.
“I was really fortunate that Seb [Priaulx] had been battling with Stuart and I thought ‘I’m just going for it’ as I knew Stuart would be quick,” said Perez. “I’m over the moon .”
After a bruising weekend, it’s no surprise that the one driver who generally avoided the incidents (and jumped starts) was points leader Tregurtha. Therefore, he has now extended his advantage to 36 over Middleton.