Will Bratt achieved a best result of eighth position on his return to the Formula Renault UK Championship at Silverstone Grand Prix Circuit yesterday, Sunday, 8th June, the 20-year-old being drafted back into the series for a one-off drive with the Apotex Scorpio Motorsport squad.Switching back to Formula Renault power from his 2008 FIAT Spanish Formula 3 Championship racer solely for the weekend’s action, the Banbury ace used all of his experience to climb from 13th on the grid during the second race to eighth at the finish.Making immediate headway on the opening lap, Will avoided the aftermath of contact between team-mates James Calado and Riki Christodoulou at Club to move into the top 10 and then started to pressurise fellow Apotex Scorpio driver Kieran Clark.On lap six, the British Racing Drivers’ Club (BRDC) Rising Star moved into ninth ahead of his team-mate and quickly searched for a way past Calado who was carrying a damaged front wing after his lap one incident.With Calado defending hard, Will moved to the outside at Luffield and through Woodcote but couldn’t quite make the pass stick. Into Copse on lap seven, Will switched to the inside and got by for eighth place where he would remain to the chequered flag.He did pressurise Scott Jenkins during the final few laps with little more than a few 10ths of a second covering the pair at any point. At the finish though, Jenkins held on by just three 10ths of a second.Commenting on today’s race action, Will said: “The car was better this afternoon, I could race but eighth was probably the best we could hope for. Perhaps if I’d made a better start we’d have been higher. I think I could have got by (Scott) Jenkins during the last few laps but I couldn’t force him into a big enough mistake. We were definitely faster though.”During the day’s first Formula Renault UK encounter, Will started from ninth on the grid and although slipping a couple of places early on he looked competitive. Into lap two, the Apotex Scorpio driver was on the outside of Jenkins into Copse but the latter leant on him through the turn and forced Will wide onto the run-off area.Rejoining down the order, Will ran in 13th place until the end of lap seven when he pitted to have his car checked over by the team. Back in the race after a lengthy stop, Will returned to the track in 19th position but soon made a second visit to the pits – this time to retire.Although not securing the results he had hoped for this weekend during his first ever race appearance at Silverstone Grand Prix Circuit, the Oxford University scholar thoroughly enjoyed his reunion with Apotex Scorpio.“It’s been fun working with everyone at the team again”, said Will, “I wanted to try and take some better results from the weekend and although we had some problems in the races, I enjoyed stepping back into Formula Renault after a long time away. Now though, my focus is back on Spanish F3 and the next two rounds three weeks from now."
Returning immediately to his History studies at Oxford University, Will’s next race outing is set to take place on 28th/29th June at Albacete in Spain – the fifth and sixth rounds of the 2008 FIAT Spanish F3 Championship. At present, Will is third in the driver standings having claimed a debut F3 pole position and podium finish during the most recent event at Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium.