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Stephen Jelley won round 11 of the Porsche Carrera Cup GB at Snetterton today (Sunday, 7 August) to take a double victory in a very important weekend for his title bid.
Michael Meadows again chased Jelley home as they both moved ahead of erstwhile championship leader James Sutton, and Jelley now has an 11-point lead in the table. Jonas Gelzinis doubled up in Pro-Am1, while Pro-Am2 was only decided at the final corner when Keith Webster dived ahead of Yucel Ozbek.
Jelley (Parker with Juta) jumped ahead from pole position and controlled the race from the front while under pressure from Meadows (SAS/Redline). After an early safety car period Meadows mounted a concerted attack, but Jelley was able to match his rival and then edge clear over the second half of the race. “We seemed to have the leg after the first quarter of the race,” he said. “To outscore Michael Meadows and James Sutton is what we wanted.” Meadows chased Jelley to the flag but was fortunate to make the finish in second as a slow rear puncture struck with four laps to run.
Into a first Carrera Cup podium finish came Richard Plant (Team Parker Racing) after spending the entire race containing the challenge of Sutton (SAS/Redline). It was 15 laps of pressure for Plant, but he was equal to the task and was delighted with his best Carrera Cup result to date. “To be at the front with the big guys was great, but that was hard work,” he said. For Sutton, it was a case of damage limitation during a trying weekend when he did not quite have the pace to challenge for victory.
Right behind Plant and Sutton were Ben Barker (Parr Motorsport) and Euan Hankey (Parker with Juta) in a fast-moving train of cars that also included Jonas Gelzinis (Juta Racing), Ben Hetherington (Oman Air/Redline) and Sam Tordoff (Team Parker Racing). Barker’s excellent pace helped earn the ‘team of the weekend’ award for Parr Motorsport.
Gelzinis extended his Pro-Am1 advantage with his second category win of the weekend. “I tried to fight with Euan and that stressed the tyres a little bit,” he said. “It was very hard to control the car later in the race.” Over the first half of the race, a tremendous battle raged over second place in Pro-Am1 as Derek Pierce (Dextra/JD Pierce by Parker) headed Rory Butcher (Celtic Speed), Ahmad Al Harthy (Oman Air/Redline), Alex Martin (Dextra/JD Pierce by Parker) and Freddy Nordstrom (GT Marques). Pierce defended resolutely for several laps before Butcher edged ahead at Agostini’s hairpin. Once ahead, Butcher pulled quickly away for a secure second in Pro-Am1. “It was another really hard fight with Derek,” he said. Despite constant pressure from Martin, Pierce completed the Pro-Am1 podium. “It’s been a hard day,” he added.
The Pro-Am2 contest ran right to the very last corner of the race as Keith Webster mounted a relentless chase of his Redline Racing team mate Ozbek. Then, as they braked for Murray’s for the last time, Webster scythed ahead in a spectacular move to take victory and help earn the ‘driver of the weekend’ award. “The Bomb Hole was the one place I was quicker and that set up the move,” said Webster. “That’s the best I’ve driven all weekend,” he added. Ozbek salvaged second place while Steve Parish (Motorbase Performance) recovered to take third after George Brewster (Celtic Speed) hit alternator problems early in the race.
Tags:Ahmad Al Harthy|Alex Martin|Ben Barker|Ben Hetherington|Carrera Cup|Carrera Cup GB|Celtic Speed|Derek Pierce|Dextra/JD Pierce by Parker|Euan Hankey|Freddy Nordstrom|George Brewster|GT Marques|James Sutton|Jonas Gelzinis|Juta Racing|Keith Webster|Michael Meadows|Motorbase Performance|Oman Air/Redline|Parker with Juta|Parr Motorsport|Richard Plant|Rory Butcher|Sam Tordoff|SAS/Redline|Snetterton|Stephen Jelley|Steve Parish|Team Parker Racing|Team Redline|Yucel Ozbek
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