Maiden SPEED series podium for Dolan & Hancock
Simon Dolan and Sam Hancock, secured their first SPEED series podium at the third round of the season at Brands Hatch last weekend.
While third place at the Kent circuit could have been first but for a late-race red flag denying the duo a shot at victory, the weekend was hugely positive for the team, who now lie second in the standings.
Dolan, taking the start from second position on the grid, produced the best ever stint of his short racing career. Against a strong field of far more experienced drivers, he jumped into the lead after making a fine getaway and after 75 minutes of the 3-hour race, handed the Jota Sport-run Ligier JS49 over to Hancock in second place, just five seconds behind the leader.
With track conditions starting to change rapidly from wet to dry and back again every few minutes, Hancock gambled on a switch to wet rubber during his pit-stop. Dropping as low as fourth position at times while he painstakingly had to nurse his tyres on an often bone-dry circuit throughout a ninety-minute stint, Hancock would then surge back into the lead with every brief rain shower. With just fifteen minutes remaining the heavens opened and Hancock chased down the slick-shod leaders. With victory seemingly in the bag as the deluge continued, the race was abruptly red-flagged ten minutes prematurely on safety grounds with Hancock now just 25 seconds behind the eventual winner.
“Our gamble was just about to pay off and I was closing so fast on the cars in front that victory was virtually a done deal,” said Hancock. “That’s racing though and while it’s a shame, we’re still happy with our first series podium. The huge positive from the weekend was the performance of Simon. In qualifying he was four seconds faster than he’s ever been before around the Brands Hatch GP circuit and his stint in the race was fast and faultless. The whole team are really proud of him and we really can’t ask for anymore than a performance like that.”
“Something just clicked for me this weekend,” explained Dolan. “Everything I’ve been learning with The Drivers Club just came together during qualifying. I think I’ve made a big leap forward and although I am gutted we didn’t win the race, the signs are very encouraging for the future.”
Watch SPEED highlights on Motors TV in 2009.
Published 07/08/2009 09:20
Latest News SPEED
Ex-F1 racer Alliot could contest SPEED event at Silverstone - 08/09 - 14:57
Nicolet lands Speed Euroseries berth for Silverstone - 05/08 - 08:58
Bellarosa does the double at Imola - 05/07 - 12:44
SPEED double for Hughes and Firth at Donington - 21/06 - 10:12
Team WFR to concentrate on manufacturing - 19/05 - 09:46