Pirelli Ferrari Formula Classic race meeting Thruxton September 3rd 2017
Hopes of a dry outing were not looking promising, with heavy grey skies looming over during scrutineering and the inevitable rain came just before qualifying. Thruxton is an intimidating circuit in the dry, let alone in wet conditions. We opted to change to new tyres to give maximum water displacement.
Qualifying got underway but with a full red flag deployed the session was halted after just 2 laps and all the cars returned to the pits. Unfortunately a car had aquaplaned and hit the wall. A shortened 15 min session in tricky conditions took place. Race start positions were decided by 1st and second fastest times respectively. A slightly disappointing session concluded that Nick would be starting the first race 8th and the second 6th on the grid. As the first race loomed near the weather went from bad to worse with horizontal rain leaving half the circuit under a few inches of water. A great start from Nick and he was up to 4th pressuring Richard Cook in his 355 challenge after lap 1. After 4 laps of hanging on Nicks pace dropped slightly and the 355 started to edge away. Nick started to fall into the grasps of the hard charging 550 Maranello of Peter Fisk and Chris Butler's 328. An 8 lap battle took place, with Butler eventually taking a hard fought 4th with Nick 2 seconds in his wake, both having kept the (mainly sideways) 550 in their mirrors.
The wait for race 2 was a very long soggy affair, but late afternoon the competitors were called for the last race of the day . A dip of the oil and a quick re-fuel and we were ready to head to the assembly area. The track had pretty much gone now and had been replaced by a shallow lake. Nick said he was going to go all guns blazing, and another epic first lap saw him straight up to third and pushing Nigel Jenkins (modified 355 challenge)for second. Nigel eventually decided the conditions were too treacherous and gave the place. A superb display of skill and stupidity ( oh I mean bravery, sorry ) saw Nick hold second until an early chequered flag ended the race in the name of safety.
A great result and the added bonus of driver of the day was a great end to the season.