It was a return to winning ways for Barkingside’s Scott Malvern in his first race for almost four months. Scott received a surprise last minute call up to compete in the guest car in the Ariel Atom Cup at Oulton Park in Cheshire last Saturday. He was thrown in at the deep having to learn how to familiarise himself with the space frame two seater in the twenty minute morning qualifying session against the championship regulars who had all had the benefit of testing at the circuit the day before.
After a steady start Scott began to post some quick times towards the end of the session, good enough for an encouraging 4th place on the grid, but was prevented from going quicker still by an overheating engine as track temperature soared on the hottest day of the year so far.
In race one he settled in for a couple of laps before successful overtaking moves for third and then second place. By this time regular series winner Nick Whitehead had opened a sizable gap in the lead but Scott began to eat into it significantly reeling off several fastest laps and the eventual fastest lap of the race overall. Unfortunately Whitehead had enough in hand to hold Scott’s advance until the end of the twenty minute race by which time Scott had pulled well clear of the battle for third place.
For race two later in the afternoon the top six of the grid were reversed so Scott had to start from grid five with Whitehead on grid six. Scott made an excellent start and quickly moved from fifth to second place over the course of the first lap and then moved into the lead on lap two and began to pull a gap over the rest of the field.
Unfortunately at this point the safety car had to be deployed owning to an incident involving three cars further down the field and the experienced Whitehead who had been able to push through to 2nd place would take the restart on Scott’s tail. But Scott was wise to this and an ambitious move trying to overtake Scott on the outside saw him run wide onto the grass and Scott pulled away into a comfortable and seemingly unassailable lead of over five seconds.
But gearbox problems for Scott saw him slow dramatically over the last two laps and the hard charging Whitehead was able to close right up but Scott used to cut and thrust of single seater racing wasn’t going to leave a gap for Whitehead to get through and held on to take an impressive debut victory in the class.
Afterwards Scott said “I’d really like to thank Mark Harrison and the Atom Cup organisers for inviting me along today. This is a great way to go racing and I’ve really enjoyed myself with some great people and great competitors. I’d like to wish them all a very happy and successful rest of the season”
For more information on Scott Malvern visit www.scottmalvern.com or contact Stopwatch Management 07956885851