The next round of the VW Cup came around quickly after Oulton Park, and my confidence was sky high. I arrived at the track on Saturday morning for a day’s testing. I had only been to Rockingham once in 2009 -Formula Renault. It was one of my favourite tracks so I was really looking forward to getting back out there. The weather wasn’t ideal, it was wet, dry, wet, dry, all day, so all we could do really is learn the track and get comfortable in the car. When Saturday came around the weather was much better and it looked like we were in for a few hot days. The practice session before qualifying went better than I could have expected. We only did 5 laps and managed to go P2 on old tyres. But by the end of the session, we ended up P6 as a result of the competition brandishing new rubber (tyres!). So after the fast times we were putting in on old tyres, I was fairly confident that we could put it on the front row for qualifying on fresh tyres. However, I only managed to do 4 laps due to the car breaking down, but still managed to place the car in P10 for the race on Sunday, but by no means that was not were I wanted to be.
Race 1: Following the disappointment of the previous day, I was determined to climb onto the podium were I know we should be. After a few wise words from Tony and the team, I lined up on my grid feeling confident. I knew I had to make a good start and make up as many places as I could on the first lap. I got off the line pretty well and by the first lap I was in 4th place and catching the leaders. Unfortunately the car began to lose power more and more with every lap. All I could do therefore, is circulate as fast as possible without losing too many places. By the chequered flag I was down in 12th place, not where we wanted to be.
Race 2: I was hopeful that the team could locate the problem and we could manage to salvage some decent points for the weekend. The team changed several parts on the car and it had seemed to solve the problem, so things were looking up. As I set off to go to parc ferme for race 2 the car started mis-firing, so the guys had to change back to the normal ECU asap and get me out onto the track. Unfortunately, I had to start from the pit lane and in last place, as we didn’t make the changes within the time period permitted. We knew the problem wasn’t going to be left unresolved, as we had the same ECU on the car, but all I could do is my best and get as many points as possible. By the flag I finished in a disappointed 16th place. After the race all of the team was gutted as we knew we could have been on the podium this weekend or even fighting for the win. I know we will come back better and stronger for the next round, and be fighting all the way for the podium! Would just like to say a big thank you to all at Team Hard for making it possible for me to race again.