Georgi Dimitrov has ended his first season of car racing in the Michelin Ginetta Junior Championship on a high at Brands Hatch this past weekend (November 14/15) as he produced an impressive pair of fightback drives.
The British-Bulgarian rising star showcased his overtaking prowess to cement his position of fourth overall in the standings and the second-best rookie in a talented 2020 entry.
Debuting in the one-make category this year, Dimitrov has proven himself to be a revelation since graduating from karting, claiming four wins and a further three podium finishes.
Bringing the curtain down on his campaign, the 15-year-old endured a frustrating qualifying session as set-up issues in challenging wet conditions left him starting 14th for the penultimate race of the season.
With conditions showing no signs of improving, the opening encounter around the Indy circuit proved to be a truncated affair, littered by red flags and safety car periods.
Launching off the line, the Hitech Academy driver wasted no time in making progress as he jumped into seventh by the end of the first lap, just before the first red flag was thrown to retrieve a handful of cars from the Paddock Hill Bend gravel trap.
Continuing to fight amongst the front-runners on the restart, the Richardson Racing ace saw his chances of making additional progress scuppered by further safety car stoppages and he would ultimately cross the line to be classified in eighth.
Race two would see further thrills and spills served up by the one-make series, with Dimitrov once again threading his way up the order. Despite the race distance being shortened to just ten minutes, he scythed his way through the field to secure sixth at the chequered flag.
Georgi Dimitrov: “It would have been great to end the season with some silverware but I’m over the moon with how I performed in the final two races of the year.
“Conditions were really challenging and I was struggling with set-up in qualifying, which meant I wasn’t able to extract as much out of the car as I would have liked. In the races, when we weren’t behind the safety car, it was mega to fight my way forward - I really enjoyed getting stuck in.
“To finish fourth overall and second of the rookie drivers in my first season is fantastic; huge credit must go to my team, family and sponsors for all their support. Now I’m looking forward to a new challenge and already focusing on next season.”
Prior to the Ginetta Junior finale, Dimitrov announced his plans for the 2021 season. The talented racer will make the transition to single-seater competition for the first time as he joins the F4 British Championship.
Dimitrov will remain with the Richardson Racing team for this exciting new challenge, with the Corby-based outfit being multiple race-winners in the championship. He is expected to be part of three-car entry for the upcoming season.
Dimitrov: "My goal has always been to race in single-seaters so I'm really excited by this opportunity, and it is great to be able to stay with the team after a strong first season together. I feel like I have been able to prove myself this year in the Ginetta and it has been a good place to start my car racing career, and British F4 is the next step.
"If you look at the top three in the championship this season, they all raced in Ginetta Juniors beforehand, and a lot of other drivers have followed the same route and gone on to do well. My aim is to follow people like that and try to work my way up the motorsport ladder.
"I don't want to get too carried away about what to expect because I am still learning, and I'll take the same approach that I took this season and see what happens. I'll work hard with the team during the winter so that we can try and make sure we are as strong as possible when we get to the first round, and hopefully we can fight for some strong results."
Image from Jakob Ebrey Photography