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The latest news from the world of racing


Archive for November, 2011

Jade PaveleyMidland Car and Kart racer Jade Paveley, has ended the 2012 race season on a high note with a second place overall at Snetterton race circuit.

Racing as part of the official Mazda Motors UK entry in a 2.0 Sport MX5 Jade was picked as one of six drivers to race for Mazda Motors UK and compete in the inaugural Snetterton 12 hour endurance relay race.

Jade practiced at the Norfolk circuit on Thursday in a Mazda MX5 road car before taking to the wheel of the race car for Friday evening’s qualifying session. Teamed up with the experienced ex BTCC driver Mark Ticehurst and the seasoned Mark Hales the team qualified 2nd on the grid for the Saturday race.

The team raced hard for 12 hours and the Mazda MX5 proved the ideal package with its reliability and superb handling providing the ideal platform for Jade to post her fastest lap to date on the Snetterton 300 circuit and improve on her qualifying time of the previous evening.

“Qualifying in the dark and mist on Friday was very dramatic, but very exciting, although I was driving well within my limits as I knew Mark had already posted a superb time for the team before the track had cooled down” said Jade. “On Race day everything just clicked and my lap times just kept on coming down, although the team kept me at a steady rhythm over the radio during my 1 hour 15 minute race slot, I was really desperate to go faster and do more. These type of races are real team efforts and it would have been really selfish to push for faster laps and risk the race car, and the overall result. I am really proud to have raced for Mazda again this season and I hope its not too long before I get to race an MX5 again as it really is a fantastic car.”

Jade has now completed her busiest season to date racing in KZ2 karts and Mazda MX5 race cars as well as completing her A levels and filming with DAVETV Driving Wars.

“I really have been a lucky girl this year, but I am already hungry for next year. I will now have a short break before starting winter testing in Ireland and then we have some hard decisions to make on what happens next year” commented Jade.

Isaac TutumluTutumlu, a Spanish with Kurdish origins, concluded 15th during last race of 2011 season in Porsche Supercup, which was held in Abu Dhabi. Good result for Barzani Racing Team´s driver after his problems in Saturday´s race.

Isaac Tutumlu has finished today his 2011 season in Porsche Supercup and he showed his good shape at Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi. Tutumlu, driving a Porsche 911 GT3 Cup lined up by Attempto Racing and under Barzani Racing Team colors, achieved a good 15 place at the end of this meeting.

In free practice session, Tutumlu was 12 fastest despite his Porsche was suffering from braking problems and which continued over the course of the weekend. It meant that in qualifying Tutumlu could just achieve 18 and 19 places on the starting grids for race one and two respectively. “We changed my car´s brake pads a few times but my feeling with them didn´t improve. They worked at the beginning but after three or four laps they got worse”, he explained.

In race one, which was scheduled on Saturday, Tutumlu made a good start but, before of the first corner, another rival got him up against the wall. Spanish driver of Kurdish origin had to brake but he lost control of his car and colliding with another rival. “I feel quite confident before the start and I made a good start. However Sebastian Bleekemolen got me up against the wall and I couldn´t control my car, hitting Alessandro Zampedri”, Tutumlu explained afterwards. In spite of Tutumlu finished the race, he was excluded later due to his collision in first lap, even when it was proved Bleekemolen´s maneuver.

Today almost everything improved and, starting 19 , he gained at least three or four places at the start. “This time I have approached first bend on the outside to avoid any kind of problems. Anyway my brake problems appeared when I was fighting for 13 place. With two laps to go, two rivals managed to overtake me, but the balance is quite positive because I faced a strong and experienced opposition and my lap times were very similar”, he told at the end.

Andrea Caldarelli successfully completed his 2011 Formula Nippon season today at Fuji. After suffering from an unlucky break at Motegi last weekend, the Pescara-based Team Kondo racer rounded out a solid and highly-competitive weekend that brought him to a double 9th place in qualifying and at the end of the race. The final round of the season, named the Fuji Sprint Cup featured an unique qualifying format as well as a shortened race distance. Drivers run just a single qualifying lip in Super Pole style, then their position was determined by pairing their laptime with their top speed. While a third-row spot was definitely in his frame, Andrea settled for 9th and en-route to providing a really positive performance on Race Day. After being forced to lift the throttle at the first corner thus lifting three spots in avoidance of a contact, he made up all the ground lost finishing in the 9th position.

Andrea Caldarelli:
“I spent an incredibly beautiful year in Japan. I landed here in May, discovering a completely new reality for me, and it really became part of myself and my personality. Team Kondo have been really close to me and we truly helped each other to accomplish our common goals. At the start of the year, we were really far away from the top guys but with hard work now we’re battling in the middle of the pack.

“With wet weather I proved how fast can be both at Autopolis and Fuji. A lot of really important people in Japanese racing praised me and that’s been great. Now I’m set to be back in Europe to take part in the selections of the FIA Institute Young Driver Excellence Academy where I hope not to suffer too much from the jet-lag and the huge physical effort of the last couple of weeks.”

Ahmad Al HarthyOmani star Ahmad Al Harthy took the best win of his motor racing career at Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi on Sunday, 13th November, with an imperious lights-to-flag performance during the fourth round of the 2011/2012 Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Middle East.

Forming part of the support bill to the FIA Formula One World Championship’s annual visit to Yas Marina, the Oman Air Racing Team driver’s maiden victory in Porsche ME has hoisted him to within juts six points of the series lead. More importantly than that though, the raising of the Omani flag on the podium at an F1 event marked the proudest moment of the patriotic 30-year-old’s career.

Starting on pole position, after an outstanding performance in qualifying on Saturday, the Oman Air, Nawras, National Bank of Oman, Brand Oman, Oman Ministry of Sports Affairs and Oman Ministry of Tourism-backed driver made a perfect getaway.

Steadily increasing his advantage at the front, Ahmad ran unchallenged throughout the 14 laps and put together a faultless race to win by over four seconds – capping off a memorable weekend. As in round three on Saturday, in which he finished runner-up, Ahmad once again set the fastest lap.

“From start to finish this is the best race and the best win of my career”, said the ecstatic racer, “I’m so, so happy with this result. We made a great start, everything went well and we took the fastest lap again so it really couldn’t have been any more perfect. We knew we had the pace to do this here this weekend.

“To me this is a home win, the Middle East is where I’m from and this is the closest thing I have to a home race. By far the proudest moment of my career was to see the Omani flag flying high above the podium on an F1 weekend. It’s the most prestigious motorsport championship in the world, to achieve a result like this on a Grand Prix weekend is incredible…I’m almost lost for words.”

Notably for the past two weekends, first in Dubai and now in Abu Dhabi, the Muscat-born driver has been competing with number 41 on his Porsche 911 GT3. The reason for this has now been clarified by the Omani…

“We’ve worked so hard these past six years to achieve a moment like this, I dedicate this win to His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said. The reason we’ve been running number 41 on the car in Porsche ME is to celebrate His Majesty’s 41st year of rule in Oman. It’s amazing to celebrate the National Holiday in Oman with this success.”

Rounds five and six of the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Middle East are expected to take place in Abu Dhabi next month – the date of the event is yet to be confirmed.

2011/2012 Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Middle East Driver Standings (after Rd4):
1st Abdulaziz Al Faisal, 72pts; 2nd Bandar Alesayi, 68pts; 3rd Ahmad Al Harthy, 66pts

Photo by Porsche Middle East & Africa.

Josh WebsterAnother impressively strong outing in the Protyre Formula Renault UK ‘Finals Series’ at Rockingham in Northamptonshire on Saturday, 12th November, secured talented rookie Josh Webster third place in the championship standings – a brilliant way to cap off 2011 for the Suffolk teenager.

Off the back of a maiden Formula Renault UK podium finish a week earlier at Snetterton in Norfolk, the 17-year-old Mark Burdett Motorsport racer produced two more strong drives to see off Red Bull-backed competitor Daniil Kvyat by seven points. Ending the series as the best placed newcomer, Josh defeated some of Britain and Europe’s most highly touted aspiring Formula One drivers.

Added to his Vice-Champion status from the Protyre Formula Renault BARC Championship this year, the top three finish in the Finals Series marks Josh out as a true contender for front-running honours in the main Formula Renault UK Championship next season.

“It’s really good getting third in the points, I’m so happy we managed to achieve it against such tough and experienced competition with just a few days in the car”, said the Stowmarket ace, “The field in the Finals Series this year has been unbelievably strong, especially with the guys who came over from Europe, but we did a great job.

“Massive thanks to Mark Burdett, Andy, Robbie and Jack at the team for all their hard work. As always, a huge thank you as well to my sponsors, especially James Palmer of Nine Telecom and Graham and David of Admiral Managed Networks.”

Having topped the times in the third of the official test sessions on Friday, 11th November, Josh and the team had high hopes for Saturday’s action but qualifying brought fresh challenges in the way of foggy conditions and a damp circuit.

Making a great start to the opening encounter and producing a brave first lap, Josh gained five places to move into fifth but following a three lap Safety Car period he made a small mistake under braking, running too deep into Deene Hairpin, and lost several places in the process. Rejoining in 10th position, he swiftly worked his way back into ninth where he remained to the flag.

Holding fourth place in the championship standings after round five, a couple of points behind Kvyat, Josh faced a tough final outing but delivered superbly. Starting seventh on the grid, out of 29 competitors, he ended lap one in sixth place and after a brief Safety Car period produced a fantastic cut-back at Deene Hairpin to take fifth.

Through two additional Safety Car interludes in the dry 25-minute encounter, Josh maintained terrific composure and challenged hard for fourth place to the conclusion. He almost made it with a superbly brave attempt through the Turn One oval banking but fifth was enough, with Kvyat 10th, to secure his richly deserved top three championship finish.

Final 2011 Protyre Formula Renault UK ‘Finals Series’ Standings (after Rd6):
CHAMPION: Oliver Rowland, 190pts; 2nd Dan Wells, 133pts; 3rd Josh Webster, 118pts

Photo by Jakob Ebrey Photography.

El piloto madrileño de Dale Gas ha ganado por segundo año, y además de manera consecutiva, la muy competitiva Clio Cup española. Pese a los momentos de tensión dentro y fuera de la pista, de los Milagros sale con un nuevo título del Circuito de Navarra.

José Manuel de los Milagros ha hecho historia este fin de semana al proclamarse por segundo año consecutivo ganador de la Clio Cup española, siendo el primer piloto que lo logra en una monomarca Renault en nuestro país en sus más de cuarenta años de historia. El piloto de Dale Gas, que vencía la segunda carrera en Los Arcos, ha sabido jugar sus bazas para alzarse con el título.

Ya en los entrenamientos libres, de los Milagros fue el piloto de referencia al liderar ambas sesiones y aventajando en el global de los mismos a su gran rival por el título, el francés Nicolas Milan. En calificación, que decidiría las parrillas de salida de ambas carreras según el primer y segundo mejor registro logrado, el madrileño conseguía la tercera posición y la segunda respectivamente, merced a los tiempos de 1:57.710 y 1:57.810.

La primera de las carreras estaba programada este domingo con una duración diez vueltas. En ella, como el propio piloto de Dale Gas explica, “en la frenada intenté superar a Milan, aunque los dos nos pasamos y nos salimos de pista sin tocarnos siquiera. Yo conseguí, a pesar de perder algunas posiciones, reincorporarme a carrera por delante de él. En ese momento, Milan, que iba detrás, comenzó a golpear mi parachoques trasero hasta que en un momento dado chocamos y él se fue contra el muro”. De los Milagros conseguiría concluir la carrera en cuarta posición pero, una posterior sanción de los comisarios deportivos debido a una reclamación presentada por Milan, le costaba treinta y cinco segundos y con ello caer hasta el último lugar.

De esta forma, todo quedaba listo para resolución en la segunda carrera de mayor duración, dieciséis
vueltas, y en la que de los Milagros partiría segundo por detrás de su gran rival. Saliendo a por todas, el vigente campeón superaba a Milan en la primera vuelta y comenzaba a imprimir un fuerte ritmo para escaparse del francés. Éste, en su intento de no perder la estela del líder, cometería varios errores y siendo el definitivo un fallo al cambiar de marcha, pues rompía el motor. Con él fuera, de los Milagros se ha concentrado en defender su primera plaza y ha finalizado la carrera como ganador. Al bajarse del coche, un de los Milagros exultante explicaba que “es uno de los
momentos más felices de mi carrera deportiva. Ha sido un año muy complicado, de muchísima tensión tanto dentro como fuera de las pistas, y con carreras donde hubo maniobras que me perjudicaron bastante. Este título representa mucho para mí, pues ha sido fruto del trabajo no sólo mío, sino también de muchas otras personas. Toda la gente de Dale Gas, a todos los patrocinadores que creyeron en mí con su apoyo y a los amigos y aficionados que me hicieron llegar sus ánimos. Gracias a todos de corazón”.

Para de los Milagros, tras haber logrado el que era su principal objetivo deportivo de la temporada, y que se suma a las victorias en la Copa de España de Resistencia y en las 24 horas de Barcelona, llega el momento de afrontar el último tramo del año, donde el triunfo volverá a estar en sus miras.

Josh WebsterJosh Webster delivered a star performance on his Formula Renault UK debut at Snetterton in Norfolk over the weekend, 5th/6th November – the 17-year-old series rookie surprising the established order by claiming his maiden category podium during the opening event of the 2011 ‘Finals Series’.

Scoring consistently well during Saturday’s opening two rounds with seventh and fifth place finishes, the Stowmarket driver improved yet further on Sunday to claim fourth position in round three before a sensational second place finish in round four delivered a richly deserved rostrum and third overall in the championship standings.

“Going into the weekend I didn’t know what to expect against such experienced and tough competition, so to get a podium is great – I’m really happy”, said Josh, “We made good progress throughout and I’m sure there’s more to come.”

Signing a deal with Mark Burdett Motorsport just a week or so prior to the start of the six-race championship, previously known as the Winter Series, the Suffolk racer joined the category for perhaps its most competitive ever campaign with over 30 drivers set to participate.

Including a wide array of experienced front-runners from Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 and Formula Renault UK, the near-capacity field served to provide an incredibly high level for Josh to measure himself against. Impressing throughout, the Formula Renault BARC Vice-Champion adapted well to the different driving style and characteristics of the UK-spec FR 2.0 car.

Qualifying 11th fastest for round one on Saturday in wet conditions, the British Racing Drivers’ Club (BRDC) Rising Star aced his first ever start in a current specification FR 2.0 car and climbed into the top eight on lap one before gaining seventh on lap four where he remained to the flag on lap 13.

Starting 10th on the grid for round two on Saturday afternoon, on a wet but drying track, another superb start hoisted Josh into the top six and following an early Safety Car period he moved into fifth on lap four. During the second half of the race, he came under intense pressure from Jordan King and Stefan Wackerbauer but repelled both.

Sunday’s action was dry and in qualifying for rounds three and four Josh posted the fifth best time. Starting on the third row, the MSA Academy teenager made another superb getaway and after challenging for fourth on the run to Riches Corner he claimed the place. Then, after a Safety Car period between laps three to six, Josh initially pushed for third before settling for fourth place.

Round four was the undoubted highlight of the weekend, not least the start where he rocketed from fifth on the grid to second place – negotiating the stalled pole position car of namesake Josh Hill. Punching in a series of consistently strong lap times, he comfortably held the runner-up spot throughout and also posted the fourth fastest lap of the race.

“We worked hard and improved more and more throughout the weekend, thanks to all the guys at Mark Burdett Motorsport for their hard work”, he added, “Thanks as well to all my sponsors, especially James Palmer of Nine Telecom and David Marsden of Admiral Managed Networks for their continued support.”

Josh now heads into the last two rounds of the Finals Series this coming Saturday, 12th November, at Rockingham in Northamptonshire just four points shy of second place in the championship.

Qualifying for rounds five and six at the Corby track is scheduled to begin at 09.30 with race one set to follow at 11.05 and race two expected to commence at 13.55. Live timing of the weekend’s action will be available online at

Provisional 2011 Protyre Formula Renault UK Finals Series Standings (after Rd4):
1st Oliver Rowland, 128pts; 2nd Dan Wells, 90pts; 3rd Josh Webster, 86pts

Photo by Jakob Ebrey Photography.

Kaan OnderProtrain Racing driver Kaan Onder won last weekends prestigious annual International Open Championship at Zuera, Spain, in impressive style. Competing in Junior Rotax Max against the world’s leading drivers from Africa, Asia, Europe and North America Kaan was the one to beat from the moment his Borusan Otomotive Motorsport sponsored Tony Kart touched the Tarmac.

In incredible form Kaan totally dominated the talented field in practice posting the fastest time in the dry and when the wet weather arrived no other driver got to within a second of him. Protrain Racing were so pleased with the set up of the kart and the amazing times Kaan was achieving they even managed to leave practice early for some well deserved relaxation, rarely an option at such a high level.

By driving with great maturity combining speed, utilising the excellent kart set up and clever slipstreaming on the extremely fast Zuera Circuit Kaan claimed pole position in timed practice coming in .11s in front of his nearest rival.

The Zuera circuit, host to the recent KF European Championship, boasts a brilliant 13 second flat out section which provides a strong slipstream for all drivers, this cost Kaan a position in one of his heats but still did not prevent him coming first in two other heats, putting him in pole position for the pre final.

Kaan got a great start but after a couple of laps it became obvious he had a kart problem which eventually forced him to retire after only four laps. Cruelly this meant that he would have to start the final at the back of the grid.

Once again showing the maturity that had earned him his place at the highest level of Junior Rotax Max, Kaan was positive that he could win knowing he had the fastest kart on the track provided by Protrain Racing. In an immense drive Kaan drove an action packed five laps and took the lead, he then spent a few laps pulling away, eventually gaining a one second lead. However the talented competition were never going to give in that easily and with just a few laps to go the second place driver took advantage of the slipstream and took first place. Kaan was in inspirational form though and brilliant positioning on the last lap saw the Protrain Racing driver claim victory in an almost photo finish across the line. He had timed and actioned his move to perfection and claimed the title.

Afterwards the Protrain driver said, “I knew I could win even from the back of the grid, I just needed a strong start and anything was possible”. Kaan’s mechanic Jim Jones forecast before the race proved to be correct, he said “Even starting the final last we will lead the race at some point, it just depends on the slip streaming whether it will be at the chequered flag, we have the kart and driver to do it with”.

The entire Protrain Racing Team are thrilled with this brilliant victory and wish Kaan well with his BMW duties and are confident that he will be remain one of the drivers to beat in Junior Rotax Max in 2012.

Protrain is one of the most successful UK team running drivers in Europe with an impressive record of European Championship wins. Gary Chapman of Protrain commented “I am thrilled for Kaan; his win further demonstrates our strength in developing drivers at the highest level. 2011 has been a very exciting year for us with several promising new drivers joining our racing team in both the UK and Europe. The future for Protrain is filled with success.”