extends championship lead with double Croft podium
Ollie Hancock extended his Formula Renault BARC championship lead to 34 points after a brace of through-the-field drives earned him a double-podium at rounds 6 and 7 at Croft.
A difficult qualifying put the Hampshire-based driver 10th and 11th on the grid, meaning recovery drives were required in both races. Hancock duly delivered with second and third place finishes, plus a bonus point for race 2’s fastest lap, meaning he comfortably out-scored all his major championship rivals.
Starting from eleventh, Ollie nailed two cars off the grid and two more at turn 2 to run seventh. At the back of a long train of battling drivers, he began picking them off one by one to rise to take fourth at the chequered flag. The subsequent disqualification of Hancock’s main championship rival Menasheh Idafar from third position, handed Ollie a podium and a significant boost in the title fight.
With light rain falling as the cars sat on the grid, Hancock made an impressive getaway as others chose a more circumspect approach. He dived down the inside of half the cars ahead into the soaking wet turn 1 to jump from tenth to fifth by the first corner, before making another overtaking move to finish the first lap in fourth. After cruising up behind third placed James Dixon, Hancock made his move for the podium at the Tower Hairpin on lap 5 and repeated the pass to take second from Isa Yousif one tour later. While he didn’t have enough time to catch leader Johannes Seidlitz, Ollie added another point to his weekend’s total with fastest lap late in the race.
Ollie: “We’ve taken a solid points score and achieved the best results we could have hoped for after a difficult qualifying. We now have a big championship lead, and if I can get qualifying right in the next round at Snetterton, I’m confident I can add to the four wins we have already this year.”