Thruxton Podium Could Be Crucial

 FOR IDAFAR NEXT SUNDAYFormula Renault BARC racer Menasheh Idafar fully understands the importance of claiming a podium finish at Thruxton Circuit next Sunday, 7th September, when the 10th round of the championship takes place at the ultra-fast Hampshire venue.With just one more race meeting remaining after the Thruxton round, the championship is at a crucial stage and although series leader Ollie Hancock will more than likely wrap up the title just over a week from now, 17-year-old Menasheh can re-assert himself in the battle for the runner-up spot with a timely return to the rostrum.Having secured an outstanding run of four podiums from the first four rounds of the season, the British-born Bahraini has encountered a few set-backs during recent races but even so he is just 10 points shy of second position in the driver standings.“I really want to be back on the podium at Thruxton and I think we have a good chance to do that”, said Menasheh, “It’ll be difficult going into qualifying without any testing on the Friday but I’m sure the team will give me a good car as always. We need some good points for the championship so it’ll be important to qualify well.”With testing at Thruxton restricted due to local authority regulations, the Formula Renault BARC competitors last had a practice run at the track back in early April. Third fastest after the first of the day’s two sessions with a time of 1m 14.458 seconds (113.91mph), Menasheh improved to a time of 1m 14.070 seconds (114.50mph) in session two.Placing him at the head of the times, Menasheh was satisfied with his day’s work and concluded his running early. Only then was he pipped to the top spot on the timesheets by just a 10th of a second. With such an encouraging run at Thruxton under his belt, the Hillspeed driver is hopeful of a very strong outing next weekend.Team principal Richard Ollerenshaw added: “We want to be back on the podium next Sunday and although I think the event could be a bit of a lottery with nobody having tested at Thruxton since April, I’m sure we’ll be in good shape. Menasheh needs a top three finish for his championship, it would be great to be back on the podium.”Round 10 of the 2008 Formula Renault BARC Championship, the penultimate event of the season, will take place on Sunday, 7th September, at Thruxton Circuit in Hampshire with qualifying taking place at 11.30 and the 14-lap race expected to commence at around 15.10.Two days prior to the race meeting, Menasheh will join his Hillspeed team at Brands Hatch Indy Circuit in Kent for a general test session on Friday, 5th September.Provisional 2008 Formula Renault BARC Championship Standings (after Rd9):1st Ollie Hancock, 117pts; 2nd Johannes Seidlitz, 71pts; 4th Menasheh Idafar, 61pts