Local hero Sebastien Dubois took the win in an exciting finish in Race 2. The Cheshire-domiciled French businessman had been threatening all day, but had been prone to over-exuberance which had caused Matt Cherrington’s TMC team to clean bucketloads of gravel from the Ginetta G56A in previous sessions.

Dubois would be starting the race from near the back of the grid, as would the potential front-running Opel Astra of Rhys Lloyd, while at the front, pole-sitter Marco Anastasi took the lead in his Datum Ginetta G56A, with Chris Bialan’s Cupra in close attendance,  these two pulling out a gap on Maurizio Sciglio’s G56A, which had considerable pressure from Lee Goldsmith’s BMW. Coming through the squabbling Clios were Dubois and Lloyd, hunting as a pair, dispensing with Steve Fresle’s Ginetta,  and pursuing the leading quartet. Hadley Simpson led the Clios, with Jack James and Alex Nevill  resisting interloper Mark Jones in the TSR Audi TT. A slow lap by Goldsmith – a spin perhaps? – took the pressure off Sciglio but allowed Dubois and Lloyd to make up a place, and when the pit window opened, Lloyd was first in, Bialan, Sciglio and Anastasi around midway, and Dubois just as the window was closing.

Overall podium for Race 2

The undercut had worked again – Harri Reynolds had relieved Rhys Lloyd in the Dragon Sport Astra, and held a slim lead over Dubois ‘ Ginetta, these two unaffected by the pit-stop success penalties awarded to the front runners, and Simon Mason, now in the Jabbasport Cupra made the best of it , keeping a watching brief on the leaders, while of the Datum team-mates, Anastasi had the upper hand this time, passing Sciglio, who dropped back, though was still comfortably ahead of Goldsmith’s BMW, which had Ben Green, now in the Century/SGM Ginetta G56A started by Fresle, bearing down on him, despite being delayed by a stop/go penalty. Up front, leader Reynolds had slowed the pace a little, with, on the final lap, Dubois still on his tail, perhaps conscious of his earlier do-or-die attempts ending in tears, but as they came out of Lodge for the final time, up out of Deer Leap, Dubois took his last-ditch attempt, jinking to the right against the pit wall, and just getting the nose of the Ginetta ahead across the line, with Mason’s Cupra  joining in on the left,  making it three-abreast, the trio covered by less than third of a second. This time Sebastien Dubois had made it work, ably assisted by the hard-working TMC squad who had some considerable re-fettling to do; Seb races only occasionally in Britcar, but when he does, he is always good value, and lest we forget, a surprise overall winner in Britcar Trophy in his very first race meeting at Silverstone in 2022, and fitting that he was victorious on his home circuit. A great job, too, by Dragon Sport, Harri Reynolds holding the lead in an unfamiliar car that had not been raced for a year, after Rhys Lloyd’s earlier storming drive, and also a sensational finish from Simon Mason, sensing a chance of victory on the final lap in the Jabbasport / Sim Dynamics Cupra that had been a top-three runner all day. Marco Anastasi had kept in touch, his Datum Motorsport Ginetta G56A just one second adrift of the leading trio at the flag, while Maurizio Sciglio finished an atypical 17 seconds shy of his Datum team mate, though not in danger from Ben Green, who had been the fastest on track by some margin in the Century / SGM G56A after his chances were thwarted by that stop/go penalty, while Lee Goldsmith’s early exciting attempts to get into the top four culminated in a seventh-place finish for the Geoff Steel-run BMW E46. Maurice Henry capitalised on Hadley Simpson’s early-race lead in the Clio class, bringing the High Row #88 car home six seconds ahead of Dragon Sport’s Matt Hyde, who had taken over from Alex Nevill mid-race. Sam Neser, in the Dragon Sport Clio started by Jack James , just held on to the final class podium spot, having diced with Thomas Jack Lee in the High Row car taken over from James Harrison, the pair trading almost identical lap times, with the gap just half a second at the flag. The third High Row machine of welcome newcomers John Cooper and Alistair Kellett sadly retired ten minutes from the end, and the Westbourne car of Mike Bowman and Ben Colburn took fifth place. The TSR Audi TT had a troubled start to the day, but stayed the distance, Mark Jones and Rob Ellick having no classmates to play with, but kept themselves busy amongst the Clios, consolidating their championship aspirations. Likewise lone driver Alex Turnbull drove his own race in the SVG Ginetta G40, picking up the Class 3 trophy.

Words: Steve Wood; photos: Paul Cherry

ROWE Driver of the Day award went to Seb Dubois