Porsche Carrera Cup GB – the fastest single marque GT racing championship in the UK – travelled to Oulton Park in Cheshire for its third weekend of the season. Will Martin (Comline Richardson Racing) drove to victory in the first race, which was interrupted by a red flag period. Matthew Graham (Redline Racing) turned the reverse grid pole position into race two victory – it made Martin and Graham the championship’s first repeat winners in 2022.
Saturday’s qualifying session saw Kiern Jewiss (Team Parker Racing) secure the maiden pole position of his Porsche racing career, the championship leader ending the session just 0.020 seconds ahead of Martin. Porsche Carrera Cup GB 2022 / 2023 Junior Adam Smalley (Duckhams Yuasa Racing with Redline) would start third. An impressive performance from Charles Rainford (CCK Motorsport) saw the Pro-Am category driver start the first of the weekend’s two races from the second row of the grid in fourth position. Michael Clark (Valluga) qualified top of the Am category runners for the first time.
The first race took place on Saturday afternoon and was interrupted by the appearance of the Safety Car followed by a red flag period, leading to a restart. Martin made two good getaways and built a comfortable lead to become the season’s first repeat winner, joined on the overall podium by Smalley and Jewiss. Rainford ran as high as second overall before finishing fourth, the highest placed Pro-Am category driver. Josh Stanton (JTR) came under attack from Mark Radcliffe (Valluga) but emerged ahead to maintain his unbroken record of category victories.
The weekend’s second race took place on Sunday afternoon. Reverse grid pole sitter Graham made a good start to lead into the first corner with Rainford maintaining second. Jewiss and Smalley kept the Pro-Am category driver honest for the duration of the race but neither could find an overtaking opportunity. Graham went on to secure his second win of the season with Rainford an impressive second overall. Jewiss completed the overall podium providing him with enough points to extend his championship lead. Rainford’s second category win at Oulton Park moved him into the lead of the Pro-Am championship while Stanton chalked up another victory in Am.
Two 40-minute practice sessions took place on Friday on the 2.2-mile Island circuit – both in dry conditions. In the morning session, Martin set the overall pace early on, however, at the midpoint Jewiss jumped to the top of the timesheet with a lap time of 1:21.561. Though Martin and Seb Morris (Team Parker Racing) came close, no-one could beat Jewiss, meaning he ended the session ahead. Rainford had the measure of his Pro-Am category rivals while Justin Sherwood (Team Parker Racing) was on top in Am.
The afternoon initially saw Jewiss ahead again, but he was soon usurped by Theo Edgerton (JTR), Smalley, and finally Martin. The latter’s time of 1:22.024 stood as quickest for much of the session but, with 10 minutes remaining on the clock, Rainford went quickest overall. However, in the closing stages of second practice, Graham produced a better time of 1:21.682 – the fastest of the afternoon. Rainford remained ahead of his Pro-Am category rivals while Stanton emerged as the fastest Am.
Saturday morning’s 30-minute qualifying session took place in dry conditions. Pro category returnee Ross Wylie (Toro Verde GT) topped the timing screens initially with Angus Whiteside (Toro Verde GT) heading Pro-Am, and Sherwood Am. Gus Burton (Rosland Gold Racing by Century Motorsport) soon set the fastest overall lap, only for Smalley, then Jewiss, to go quickest – Jewiss was the first driver to lap in under 1:21 with a time of 1:20.861. Morris and Martin set identical lap times, 1:21.409, to occupy fourth and fifth places respectively – Morris was registered ahead having set the time first.
The second half of the session saw improvements across the board, especially in the final few minutes when every driver returned to the circuit on fresh Michelin slick racing tyres. Smalley went quickest, then Martin, before Jewiss set a new time good enough to secure the maiden pole position of his Porsche racing career, 1:20.371 – just 0.020 ahead of Martin. Rainford continued his good form to top Pro-Am, qualifying fourth overall. In Am, Clark finished ahead of category rivals Stanton and Radcliffe.
The 2022 Porsche Carrera Cup GB weekend format meant that Jewiss earned two championship points with his pole position, as did the top qualifiers in their respective categories – Rainford (Pro-Am) and Clark (Am).
The first of the weekend’s two races took place on Saturday afternoon in dry conditions. Martin made a good start to leap ahead of Jewiss off the line and lead into Old Hall Corner, Jewiss slotting into second with Smalley third and Rainford – the top Pro-Am – retaining fourth place. Later into the opening lap there was contact between Clark and Peter Kyle-Henney (Toro Verde GT), the latter continuing to Knickerbrook before making his retirement from the race, with Clark retiring to the pit lane. Following contact between Jack Bartholomew (Comline Richardson Racing) and Oliver White (Duckhams Yuasa Racing with Redline), the latter found the gravel trap at the exit of Knickerbrook. The Safety Car was scrambled, then the red flag deployed to bring the race to a halt – this allowed for the cars of White and Kyle-Henney to be recovered.
The race was restarted with a new distance of 10 laps or a running time of 15 minutes – whichever came first. At the second standing start, Jewiss slipped backwards as Martin retained his lead into the first corner once more. Rainford made the best start though to snatch second with Smalley third and Jewiss now relegated to fourth. Burton and Morris soon made contact – Burton left the circuit at the exit of Old Hall where his race ended, while Morris took a trip through the gravel trap at Cascades before retiring to the pit lane. Behind Pro-Am category leader Rainford, Ryan Ratcliffe (Team Parker) defended from an attacking Will Aspin (Team Parker). Having taken the lead of the category before the race was red flagged, Stanton was passed by Mark Radcliffe (Valluga) for the lead in Am.
Martin quickly built a comfortable lead over Rainford as Smalley had his mirrors full of an attacking Jewiss in their fight for third. One lap later, Edgerton overtook returnee Wylie for seventh, Smalley then beginning to pull away from Jewiss, putting pressure on Rainford for second. As Smalley went to the outside of Rainford into Old Hall Corner this gave Jewiss a run on him into The Avenue. A lap later, Smalley made the same move stick driving to the outside of Rainford at Old Hall Corner to take second, Jewiss following him through for third. In their continuing Am battle, Stanton retook the category lead from Radcliffe.
On the penultimate lap, Rainford came under pressure from Matthew Graham (Redline Racing) in their fight for fourth. Just behind, Edgerton attacked Stanley for sixth. Following contact between Bartholomew and Stanley, the latter would retire from the race on the final lap. At the flag, Martin became the first repeat winner of the season with Smalley second and Jewiss third. Rainford retained fourth overall to take victory in Pro-Am, joined on the category podium by Ratcliffe and Aspin. Stanton maintained his record of unbroken category wins, with Radcliffe and Sherwood forming the remainder of the Am podium.
For recording the fastest lap in each of their respective categories, Martin (Pro), Rainford (Pro-Am) and Stanton (Am) each received one additional championship point. As part of the 2022 podium procedure, winner Martin selected at random the number five ball, which reversed the grid positions of the top five overall race finishers from the opening race. That made the grid order for Sunday’s race Graham from Rainford, Jewiss and Smalley forming row two, with Martin and Wylie on row three.
Following the race, Bartholomew was deducted two championship points and two category points for contact with Stanley. For contact with Stanley and Wylie, Edgerton was deducted two championship points and two category points. For a post-race incident, Stanley was given a penalty of six championship and six category points and excluded from the Oulton Park weekend.
The second race of the weekend took place over a 20-minute timed distance on Sunday afternoon in dry conditions, however, Burton did not take the start due to a technical issue. When the lights went out, Graham got away cleanly to lead into Old Hall Corner, followed by Rainford, with Jewiss third, and Smalley slotting into fourth. With Rainford battling at the front, Ratcliffe and Aspin re-engaged in another close fight for second in Pro-Am. Stanton maintained his advantage in Am, with Radcliffe second in category and Rice third.
In the early phase of the race, Graham quickly built a 1.5-second lead over Rainford as Jewiss pressured the Pro-Am leader, however, he could not find a route through. Also keen to advance was Edgerton, as he began to attack Wylie for sixth. On the third lap of the race, Morris left the circuit at Island Bend before rejoining. Ratcliffe and Aspin continued their close fight and, on the following lap, Rice locked up allowing Sherwood to overtake him for third in Am. At the halfway point of the race, Graham enjoyed a 1.7-second cushion back to Rainford.
With eight laps complete, Edgerton finally found a way by Wylie at Island for sixth. A couple of laps later – in their battle for fifth in Pro-Am – Harrison gained on Whiteside when the latter ran deep into Hislops, taking to the grass before rejoining and staying ahead of his rival. On lap 11, White made contact with Bartholomew at the hairpin – White left the circuit as a result before driving to the pit lane, before later rejoining the race. At the same time, Morris entered the pit lane where he made his retirement.
In the final few laps of the race, Graham had established a buffer of more than five seconds back to Rainford. Try as he might, Jewiss could not find a way past the Pro-Am category driver, with Smalley tucked up behind the pair in fourth position. At the flag, Graham took his second win of the season with Rainford and Jewiss joining him on the overall podium. Rainford made his second podium appearance of the afternoon by topping Pro-Am, while Ratcliffe held off Aspin to take second in the category. Stanton took his sixth Am win from as many races, with Radcliffe and Sherwood completing the category podium.
For recording the fastest lap in each of their respective categories, Graham (Pro), Rainford (Pro-Am) and Stanton (Am) each received one additional championship point. Following the race, for his incident with Bartholomew, White was handed a penalty of two championship points and two category points.
The championship travels to Scotland on the weekend of 30 and 31 July – the challenging Knockhill circuit is a firm favourite with drivers and spectators alike. Following the Oulton Park weekend, Jewiss has increased his overall championship lead with Martin moving into second – three points adrift of the leader. Jewiss, Martin, Smalley and Graham are now separated by just five points in total at the top of the table. Rainford’s excellent weekend in Cheshire accelerates him into the Pro-Am category championship lead, while Stanton continues to increase his advantage in Am.
Kiern Jewiss – Team Parker Racing – 46
Will Martin – Comline Richardson Racing – 43
Adam Smalley – Duckhams Yuasa Racing with Redline – 42
Charles Rainford – CCK Motorsport – 45
Nathan Harrison – Redline Racing – 40
Ryan Ratcliffe – Team Parker – 40
Josh Stanton – JTR – 69
Justin Sherwood – Team Parker Racing – 43
Mark Radcliffe – Valluga – 37
*results remain provisional