- Zakir Munawer
Will Jenkins Shows Impressive Pace Amidst Challenging Silverstone Weekend
Will Jenkins continued to score points and show his speed and talent during a testing weekend in the Michelin Ginetta Junior Championship at Silverstone (26/27 September).
Following on from a promising run of events in his maiden Ginetta Junior campaign, Jenkins and his privateer team were looking to continue their good form in Northamptonshire.
Friday’s two practice sessions proved to be very productive and positive for the 15-year-old as he got to grips with the 1.6 mile National circuit. Posting the fourth quickest time in the second session put him in an optimistic mood heading into qualifying. Despite issues with traffic, the Hopkins Motorsport sponsored driver enjoyed one of his best qualifying sessions of the season, matching his previous best result of eighth place from Knockhill.
Jenkins went on to enjoy a very competitive first race, joining a four-way fight for fifth position. As a topsy turvy race neared the closing stages, the rookie was holding eighth position until contact from behind spun him round and dropped him to a frustrating 15th. The Asset Alliance Group, Corroconsult and Digraph Transport Supplies supported racer quickly put that disappointing end to Saturday behind him. From sixth on the grid in race two, he unfortunately lost a few positions on the opening lap. He pushed hard either side of a mid-race red flag stoppage and came home ninth at the finish. The last race of the weekend was sadly an anti-climax for Jenkins. From the very beginning of the race, it was clear that the car had an engine problem and that the Staffordshire based racer was down on horsepower. He took the chequered flag in 15th place. Following the three races at Silverstone, Jenkins now lies in 14th position in the drivers’ standings. The next race weekend of the 2020 Michelin Ginetta Junior Championship takes place at Croft on 10/11 October.
Will Jenkins: “Friday ran very well for me and my team. We ran new tyres in FP1 and found that we had good pace, despite being blocked and struggling for a tow a couple of times during the session.
"The car felt even better that afternoon and at one stage we were as high as second place. This gave us a real confidence boost heading into Saturday. “Qualifying was very positive for us. The car felt great to drive and I was happy to be starting the first race from eighth position. I was confident that from there we could mix it up with those ahead of me. “Race one was really positive right up until the last lap. It was great to be able to have lots of wheel to wheel battles and we were looking good for a solid top 10 finish until somebody spun me down to 15th.
"I was disappointed, of course, but I just looked at the positives. We had good pace and I would be starting race two from just outside the top five. “That second race was chaotic. We had good speed in the race but a below par start and the two red flags really cost me the opportunity to make up more ground. In the end, a top 10 was still positive but I definitely felt as if we could have been higher up the order. “Our final race really didn’t go according to plan. As soon as the lights went out, I knew something was wrong. The car felt quite draggy and it was difficult to stop my rivals from getting past, especially on the straights Still, we got another finish and kept our run of five consecutive points finishes going. “Overall, this weekend has been positive in terms of our pace for the majority of the weekend, but I am a bit disappointed with the results.”
Image from Jakob Ebrey Photography.