After the outing at Spa, we felt that further developments could be made to the front suspension and Bilstein managed to supply new springs and cups to make the front stiffer under braking along with a new Carbon Fibre Roof section we had made to replace the Glass rear section that was still on the car.
The team arrived at Rockingham on the Saturday evening and was able to secure a garage and so set everything up so they could have an early night as scrutineering and signing on was at 07.30 on the Sunday morning.
Rain had fallen overnight, but when qualifying came, the track was dry and 22 cars went out to qualify for the afternoon’s race. Getting used to the new suspension set up, Rob started to put in some fast times, with John keeping him abreast of his position over the radio. At the end of qualifying, Rob managed a very happy 14th ahead of all the other cars in his class, consisting of BMW’s, Toyota’s and Renaults.
An hour before the race was due to start, the heavens opened and with the track still wet it was decided to go out on the AD08’s which have proven to be a really good tyre for wet conditions. Waiting in assembly, the sun suddenly came out and although others changed back to dry tyres, it was felt that it would be better to stick with what we had fitted as we knew large puddles could be accumulated in certain areas of the track.
At the start, Rob was able to keep up and was doing well up until the Safety Car came out due to the MR2 unfortunately hitting the wall and so a couple of laps was had behind the Safety Car before the race could start properly again. When it did, Rob was able to keep his position until he came in for the compulsory pit stop where he then came out in 18th place. Throughout the rest of the race, John kept Rob up to date with positions until he was in 15th following John around in his Porsche 968. Both going hot in to the esses before the start finish, John lost the back end as Rob was forced to brake a bit harder, causing him to spin in the process. Once back on track again, Rob put in faster and faster laps and was able to then take John for 14th place overall, both enjoying the battle together.
With a few more developments in the pipeline, the team are looking to improve again for the next round at Mallory on the 1st August.