Harley Haughton Continues Impressive Start To Season With Silverstone Poles
Harley Haughton bagged yet another sensational double pole position during the latest rounds of the Ginetta GT5 Challenge season at Silverstone (07/08 May), and was unlucky not to add to his early season podium finishes as he continued his great start to 2022.
The Stockport based teenager, who is racing with leading Ginetta outfit Elite Motorsport for his second season in the GT5 Challenge, was a front-runner across the opening two events at Oulton Park (16-18 April) and Donington Park (23/24 April), producing eye-catching performances on the support bills of both British GT and BTCC.
A podium finish was the reward for Haughton’s standout pace in the season opener over Easter weekend, grabbing second place in race one after a thrilling battle at the head of the pack, before adding a further pair of top five finishes.
A week later at Donington, the 17 year old stormed to brilliant double pole position in qualifying and added a second podium finish to his tally in the second of three races in Leicestershire. He was unlucky not to make it a podium double for the weekend, with a time penalty denying him another trophy.
Full of confidence after those successes, Haughton made the trip to Silverstone for the latest rounds of the championship this past weekend, with a maiden victory firmly in his sights on the full Grand Prix circuit.
After showing great pace throughout Friday’s test day, he stepped up a level for qualifying on Saturday morning. A blistering performance saw him light up the timesheets to record a second consecutive double pole position.
Race one took place later that day and it was Haughton’s milestone 25th race in only his second season of car racing. After initially slipping to second on lap one, he fought back to the lead soon after. Pushing hard to maintain his advantage as the race developed, he looked set for victory until contact late on from the driver behind sent him off circuit and left him fourth at the finish.
Haughton once again found himself in the thick of the podium battles throughout race two the following day. Surviving a frenetic early phase, he was running in second when another bout of contact from behind sent him wide at Club corner and dropped him to a finishing position of fifth.
After his impressive start to the season, the Enjoy Benefits Ltd and iTG Search Vista supported driver sits fourth in the championship standings heading into the next rounds at the fastest circuit in the UK, Thruxton, later this month (28/29 May).
Harley Haughton: “It’s been a great start to the season and I’m really enjoyed the racing. While it’s been frustrating to not always get the race results that our pace has deserved, to get my first pole positions and podium finishes in car-racing have been fantastic moments for me.
“Silverstone has been a frustrating weekend as Elite Motorsport gave me a very quick car, as qualifying showed, but I just got caught up in battles through the races. On both occasions it was incidents out of my control that ultimately cost us podiums, but sometimes luck just plays its part like that.
“We know we can win races and we’re getting closer to achieving that objective. If I can keep my qualifying record going and keep putting myself in the mix at the front of the field, our time will come … hopefully next time out at Thruxton.”
Image from Jakob Ebrey Photography.