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Tag: George Gamble

George GambleGeorge Gamble, 2011 Ginetta Junior Winter Series Champion, will make a welcome return to the track at Brands Hatch Grand Prix Circuit this weekend, 20th/21st October, after signing a deal with Hillspeed to contest the four-round Protyre Formula Renault BARC Winter Series with Michelin.

The Nottingham 16-year-old will make his single-seater debut with the Hathersage team after a six month lay-off from action – he memorably withdrew from the 2012 Ginetta Junior Championship in April following a multi-car accident at Donington Park which resulted in his car being written-off.

Gamble instantly became a success in the ranks of Ginetta Junior in his first full season of car racing in 2011 when he took three victories and five other podiums on his way to third in the standings. He then went on to claim that November’s Winter Series title with one win and two further podiums from the four races contested.

Joining Gamble for the Winter Series will be Formula Ford graduate Matt Rao who made his Protyre Formula Renault BARC debut with Hillspeed during the final two rounds of the main season at Silverstone almost a fortnight ago.

The 18-year-old, this year’s Dunlop MSA Formula Ford Championship of Great Britain Duratec Class Champion, impressed on his first weekend in ‘slicks and wings’ and secured a best finish of 15th place from a capacity grid of 32 cars.

Like new team-mate Gamble, Rao – who is a British national but resides in Levignac, France – has the benefit of past experience of the full Brands Hatch GP track so will undoubtedly make good progress during rounds one and two of the Winter Series this weekend.

“We’re absolutely delighted to have George partnering Matt for the Winter Series and we’re certain both drivers are going to be very competitive”, said Hillspeed team principal Richard Ollerenshaw, “I was very pleased with Matt’s progress on his debut at Silverstone, to come straight into Formula Renault from Formula Ford and race so strongly was great to see.

“Since George decided to withdraw from Ginetta Junior earlier in the year, we’ve been very keen to get him out in one of our Formula Renaults in race conditions. When he tested the car earlier in the year he was very quick and we’re sure he can spring some surprises on his debut this weekend.”

In addition to Hillspeed’s commitments in the Protyre Formula Renault BARC Winter Series this weekend, the team’s Ginetta Junior squad will also be in action at Brands Hatch for the final two rounds of its 2012 season.

Going into the event, Spanish car racing rookie Pepe Massot is fourth in the overall championship with two wins while relative newcomer Freddie Lee – who only debuted in August – is 14th in the driver standings with a best result of seventh place so far.

Formula Renault BARC qualifying will take place at 09.00 and 12.45 on Saturday, 20th October, with race one beginning at 16.10 and race two following on Sunday, 21st October, at 13.10. Ginetta Junior qualifying will get underway at 13.50 on Saturday with round 19 scheduled for 16.45. The final round of the Ginetta Junior season will follow on Sunday at 12.10.

Sunday’s racing will be screened live on ITV4, on ITV4 HD and streamed online at www.itv.com/btcc

Photo by Jakob Ebrey Photography.

George GambleGeorge Gamble has today, Monday, 16th April, confirmed his withdrawal from the Ginetta Junior Championship with immediate effect – calling time on his involvement in the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship support series after the weekend’s second event of the season.

Following on from a major incident in round three at Donington Park on Saturday, 14th April, in which the 15-year-old’s Hillspeed-run Ginetta G40 was written off, the decision has been taken by George to pursue other opportunities rather than continue competing in Ginetta Junior.

The Nottingham-based 2011 Winter Series Champion was undoubtedly one of the title favourites this year but in the aftermath of Saturday’s multi-car accident – disagreeing with the parity of the judicial decisions taken and also the spare car ruling – he has chosen to leave the series immediately.

Instead, George is now looking towards a variety of other motor racing options, including a potential switch to single-seaters, although nothing is confirmed at this stage as he takes stock of the fall-out from the weekend’s action.

“I got taken out of Saturday’s race through no fault of my own and, as a result, we had a four car pile-up”, he explained, “Two cars in our team alone were written off and nothing was really done about it, I feel like it’s just been swept under the carpet so I’ve decided to look at other options.

“If I’d have gone out in a spare car for Sunday’s race I’d have lost 20 points straight away as a penalty, so it was pointless me going out. With two non-scores from the weekend, I wouldn’t be allowed any other mistake or DNF for the rest of the season. I’m not happy with how it’s all been handled, that’s the main reason we’ve taken this decision.”

Prior to this weekend’s event at Donington Park, George was second in the championship standings having taken two podium finishes at Brands Hatch during the season opener. Qualifying on pole for rounds three and four on Saturday, the Hillspeed driver was in the hunt for victory in the first race until contact to his rear quarter on lap nine led to an enforced spin and triggered a major collision.

His team worked tirelessly through the night on Saturday to ready a spare car for round four on Sunday, however, with no waiver regarding the 20 point penalty Gamble felt the only option was to walk away from the championship.

Photo by Jakob Ebrey Photography.