During Croft Test
ELF Renault Clio Cup front-runner Jonathan Ridley-Holloway continued his excellent progression at Croft Circuit in North Yorkshire yesterday, by posting the seventh fastest time overall during official championship testing. Having travelled the lengthy 360 mile journey from his home in Barnstaple, North Devon, the 23-year-old category rookie immediately impressed during the first of the 45 minute sessions this morning. Completing just four laps in total in wet conditions, Jonathan posted the third fastest time of 1m 46.739 seconds (71.66mph).In session two he maintained his front-running pace as the track dried slightly, lapping the 2.12-mile circuit in 1m 41.775 seconds (75.16mph). Ending the run in sixth place, he was less than a 10th of a second shy of multiple Clio Cup Champion Paul Rivett.Conditions improved more during the afternoon so times were significantly quicker in session three, Jonathan lapping in 1m 34.081 seconds (81.31mph). His fastest time of the day though came during the fourth and final test run where he produced a highly impressive lap of 1m 33.266 seconds (82.02mph).Good enough for fifth fastest in the session, just over a 10th of a second shy of vastly experienced Total Control Racing team-mate Nick Adcock in third place, Jonathan’s time also placed him seventh overall on combined times, one place ahead of Rivett.“Today has been great, third fastest in the wet, in the top six in the second session and then fifth quickest during the final run. It’s been a pretty good test all told, I really enjoyed myself”, commented Jonathan, who is backed by A4 Apparel, Bond Oxborough Phillips and PicoPC.co.uk.“In many ways it was a perfect test day in terms of the conditions. With two wet sessions and two dry sessions, the mix was good for me to learn more about the car. I did have one excursion at Tower Bend when the brakes locked up but it was no big drama. All in all I’m really pleased with how the test has gone, we’ve shown some good pace today.”Ridley-Holloway looking forward to Donington challengeNext on the racing calendar for Jonathan is the third event of the 2008 ELF Renault Clio Cup season, rounds five and six, taking place at Donington Park National Circuit 10 days from now on 3rd/4th May.Although he actually made his competitive Clio Cup debut at the Leicestershire venue last November in the 2007 Winter Championship, the TCR ace hasn’t tested at the track since so his first run at Donington in almost six months will come during the pre-event test next Thursday, 1st May.“I reckon we’ll be alright at Donington”, added Jonathan, “I’m really looking forward to it and I’m aiming to push for the top six. It’ll be interesting and I’m quietly confident we’ll have a couple of good races. Qualifying will be very important, as always, but as long as we can be on the first three or four rows I think we stand a good chance.”ELF Renault Clio Cup qualifying ahead of the fifth and sixth rounds of the season will take place at 11.40 on Saturday, 3rd May, with the first of the weekend’s races following at 17.15. Race two is scheduled for 14.30 on Sunday, 4th May, and is expected to be screened live on Freeview, cable and digital satellite channel ITV4.