- Simon Paice
Breakell Racing Score Breakthrough Ginetta Weekend At Knockhill
Breakell Racing enjoyed a fantastic weekend of Ginetta racing at Knockhill this past weekend (14/15 August), with their Michelin Ginetta Junior Championship rising star Aqil Alibhai scoring seasons’ best qualifying and race results.
The Lancashire team made the trip north to Scotland at the start of the week to complete a couple of test days with Alibhai ahead of the race meeting, with the South African racer taking full advantage to build his speed around the unique 1.2 mile circuit.
After making further progress in free practice on Friday, Alibhai converted everything he’d learnt into a brilliant eighth fastest overall in qualifying. He was then in the thick of the front-running action throughout the opening race, taking the finish in eighth for a first top ten result.
A strong run in the rearranged race from Oulton Park two weeks ago saw Alibhai finish 20th, before a great performance from the back of the grid in race three resulted in him gaining eight places to 17th. In the final race, further progress moved him to 15th to complete a clean sweep of points finishes over the weekend.
In the Millers Oils Ginetta GT4 SuperCup, Reece Somerfield used his previous Knockhill experience to piece together an impressive weekend. After qualifying ninth fastest, he battled hard to score a trio of top ten finishes, with a best result of seventh in race three.
James Breakell - Team Principal:“We’re so proud of Aqil for a truly fantastic weekend. He made great progress across testing and that showed with brilliant performances across qualifying and the races. To get his first top ten finish was richly deserved and truly showed the pace he had.
“Reece was on form over the weekend as well and was impressive with his hat-trick of top ten finishes. As a team, we feel we’re making some good progress in the Ginetta championships and hope to kick on further in the next few rounds.”
Both Alibhai and Somerfield will be back on track in less than two weeks’ time, as Breakell Racing return for a second visit of the season to the fastest circuit in the UK, Thruxton (27/28 August).
One week prior to the Knockhill event, Breakell Racing were at Snetterton for the latest rounds of the Protyre Motorsport Ginetta GT5 Challenge. Silas Rytter joined the team for not only his debut in the championship, but also his first ever races in the UK.
The Danish racer faced a steep learning curve in the ultra-competitive GT5 Pro class, but showed great progression across pre-event testing and adapted well to the new challenge of wet weather conditions for qualifying on Saturday.
All three races took place on Sunday, with the teenage talent impressing in the opener to make good progress up the order to 13th. Better was to come in race two as he produced another battling drive in the competitive midfield to finish 11th.
Rytter, who is mentored by Morten Dons and his STEP Sports Management company, was greeted by rain again for race three as he finished 15th to cap off a great debut weekend.
James Breakell: “We’re delighted with how Silas performed over the weekend. Snetterton is one of the most technical circuits in the UK, so that combined with the changeable weather conditions made it a tough introduction to the GT5 Challenge.
“He took it all in his stride though and with the support of Morten and the team, made great progression across the sessions. The drive to 11th in race two was particularly impressive and we look forward to working with him again soon.”
Sean Peters will be back behind the wheel of the Ginetta G40 for the remaining rounds of the Protyre Motorsport Ginetta GT5 Challenge season, alongside the BTCC at Croft (18/19 September) and the season finale at Donington Park (16/17 October).
Images from Jakob Ebrey Photography.