Redline Racing enjoyed podium success with three drivers during the Porsche Carrera Cup GB’s return to Thruxton this past weekend (17/18 August), with George Gamble, Jack McCarthy and John Ferguson leaving Hampshire with silverware.
The championship was competing at the fastest circuit in the UK for the first time since 2014, and Redline Racing made their return with fond memories of a double victory on the last visit in the hands of two-time champion Michael Meadows.
This time around it was George Gamble who was challenging for the overall wins in his Amigos Beer supported Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car. A strong start to the weekend saw him qualify third overall on Saturday afternoon, his fourth consecutive top three qualifying result.
The opening race on Sunday morning was a remarkable affair as the field tackled changeable weather conditions. Starting on a wet circuit following morning rainfall, Gamble was one of a number of drivers on slick rubber to lose out in the early stages to wet tyre runners.
As the race headed towards mid-distance the track turned back into the favour of those on slicks and after slipping back to sixth at one stage, a great fightback drive saw the Nottingham based driver come home in third place for his fifth podium finish of the season so far.
Unfortunately Gamble’s efforts to double his tally for the weekend in race two were ended only two corners in, as heavy contact from the inside heading through Campbell corner led to damage to his car, which forced him into an immediate retirement.
Seb Perez meanwhile put in an impressive display as he once again battled on the fringes of the podium. Qualifying sixth on the grid, he joined Gamble on slick tyres in race one and followed his Amigos team-mate for the majority of the race on his way to fourth place.
Placed third on the reverse grid, Perez slid into the race lead heading through the complex for the first time. A spirited display in the live ITV4 televised race saw him fight for the podium throughout before eventually coming home fourth once again at the chequered flag.
Another strong performance came from Pro Am contender Jack McCarthy, as he continued his first season in the series. The Kent racer showed great pace in qualifying to finish second quickest in class; the fourth time in five sessions this season he’s ended up in the class top two.
An unfortunate brake issue in race one led to a pitstop and put him a lap down on the field, but he bounced back superbly in race two. Fighting through from last on the grid, he gained no less than eight positions overall as he recorded a seventh Pro Am podium of the campaign.
The star performance of the weekend came from Am class racer John Ferguson. A stunning qualifying display saw him outpace Pro and Pro Am contenders on his way to tenth overall, while he converted his class pole position into a stunning pair of double victories on Sunday.
Ferguson adapted superbly to the conditions in race one to take a dominant win, before leading from lights to flag again in the second outing. The Scotman’s performances earnt him the championship’s Driver of the Weekend accolade.
Redline Racing secured the Team of the Weekend award, with the Teeside squad remaining in contention for the Entrants Championship. Gamble and Perez sit in the top five of the Pro standings, Ferguson is second in the Ams while McCarthy is third in Pro Am and top of the Rookie points.
Simon Leonard – Team Boss: “After the summer break, it was nice as a team to return to action with some podium results. Coming back to Thruxton after a number of years away was a real challenge, but the team came together well and all of our drivers put in great performances.
“We once again showed we have two of the fastest contenders in the Pro class. George [Gamble] put in a brilliant drive in the tricky conditions in race one to get back on the podium, while after two great runs it was a shame to see Seb [Perez] just miss out on silverware.
“Qualifying and race one didn’t pan out as Jack [McCarthy] would have wanted, but his fightback drive in race two was really impressive. John [Ferguson] was an absolute revelation, he really clicked with the circuit, battled with drivers in higher classes and richly deserved his two wins.
“With three meetings to go, we’re in contention for all five of the class championship’s and won’t be giving up in any without a fight. We’ve got back to back weekends at Silverstone coming up and we know we’re quick on both layouts, so we’re confident of some strong results.”
The 2019 Porsche Carrera Cup GB season will be supporting the FIA World Endurance Championship around the Silverstone Grand Prix circuit next (30 August/1 September), before tackling the National layout next month back in support of the BTCC (28/29 September).
Image from Dan Bathie/Porsche.