|Posted by Jonny McMullan on October 28, 2013 at 4:05 PM|
Hi again, hope you’s all are well! Since the last kirkistown meeting I took part in the Formula Vee Festival Meeting for the next round off the Irish Formula Ford 1600 Championship. Myself, dad and John Harris headed down on the Thursday night late on so we would be there for testing for the first session on the Friday.
Friday went good getting the car set up for the track as it would be completely different than Kirkistown as its a lot more technical and there are more stop/ go corners! After a session or two familiarising with the track again after only doing one race meeting on it before, we got up to speed pretty quickly in the morning sessions and were second quickest in most off the sessions! Stephen Daly was putting his mark down from the start off the day with a few tenths on everyone! We struggled with a bit off understeer so we saved a good set of tyres for the afternoon sessions to dial the set up off the car into the track, looking forward to qualifying on Saturday morning.
Once we got rid of the understeer we were quickest in most off the afternoon sessions. The last two sessions on the Friday were concentrated on getting pads and tyres scrubbed in and the car working well on the new tyres for qualifying.
Saturday morning came for qualifying and I was in good form from Friday. I was first out onto track and got in behind Stephen Daly because I knew he was going to be the man to beat. The first four laps were good and I got heat into the tyres well and the car felt brilliant and we were quickest for the first few laps, but trying a bit too hard I had a bit of a moment and locked up into the Esses and went off and that kind of destroyed my rhythm for a few laps while most drivers set their quickest lap that lap! Driver error! After a few laps I got back on it and set my quickest lap on my last lap which was only good for fourth place on the grid for race one and third for race two. I knew were we were lacking and that was mainly out off Dunlop corner.
Race one came on the Saturday afternoon and I got a good start and round the outside of Niall Murray at turn one which gave me the line for Adelaide corner. A few laps struggling with the car I had to defend from the great start of Doyle which let a gap to the front two drivers form! After I was able to pull away from Doyle, I was able to charge after Smyth. I was able to take a tenth out off him every lap but unfortunately I ran out off laps and I was right on second going across the line for a good points scoring race in third.
Warm up came across us on Sunday morning and I still had a few weak points around the track, so we thought we would try something drastic with the set up but unfortunately it didn’t pay off and felt worse and were p5 in morning warm up but I was confident going into the race as I knew we still had a good race set up from race one
Race two started and another good start into turn one but unfortunately I got boxed in and fell down to fifth place behind Doyle and Murray. Unfortunately I was getting held up for the start off the race and let the two leaders get away but I got up into fourth place past Doyle and then a move by McCullough pushed me back down to fifth. After a few laps in a train behind Murray, McCullough made the move at turn one and fortunately I was able to get past as well and then myself and McCullough pulled away from Murray. Again I felt as if I had more pace than the car in front but great defending from Mccullough by putting the car in the right place at the right time made it difficult for me to pass meaning a fourth place finish.
Looking back on the weekend now it was a frustrating weekend because we had better pace for where we finished in race two but it was great points for the Irish Championship.
Next event for me will be in three weeks at Kirkistown for the next round off the Northern Ireland Formula Ford 1600 Championship and I’m hoping for good results there.
I would just like to thank NI Radiator Services, The Dark Horse, John Harris and Mum and Dad for their continued support and I look forward to getting in the car again soon