ANOTHER PODIUM FOR VAUXHALL’S JOHN ALLISON
Vauxhall’s new driving talent, John Allison, claimed his fifth podium of the season on Saturday at Thruxton, Hampshire, with another second-place finish. The 2007 VXR Racing Driver of the Year Champion has gone from strength-to-strength, scoring his fourth second-place of the year at Rounds 12 and 13 of the Dunlop Sport Maxx Cup.
Under wet conditions, the full-time mortgage consultant from Beverley, East Yorkshire, claimed the second fastest time during the first qualifying session with a best lap of 1:34.186, putting him on the front row of the grid for race one. The second qualifying session saw John take fourth place with a fastest time of 1:33.150.
John made a fantastic start to Round 12, taking the lead for the first half of lap one. Despite damp conditions, a fierce battle ensued at the front of the field. After fighting hard for position, John finished the 10-lap race in fourth place. The second race saw the 35-year-old jump into third position from fourth on the grid. After pitting early, John was able to close the gap on leader Simon Shaw and fellow Vauxhall driver Martin Wallbank in second place. John and Martin both passed Shaw and pulled away from the rest of the field to take a fantastic one-two victory.
“It was a great weekend,” said John, who beat 10,000 initial entrants to win the drive. “I had a lot of ballast after my success at Brands Hatch and still proved to be very competitive during qualifying, even with a heavier car. [Additional weight is added to a car after successful results as a performance equalising measure]. Race one was probably the most intense 15-minutes of my racing career so far. The track was awesome and gave me such an adrenaline buzz. The fast tracks really suit the Astra VXR, and I think Thruxton has just topped Castle Combe as my favourite track!”
John, who won his fully-paid season in the Astra VXR in 2007, is receiving support from the contestants for this year’s VXR Racing Driver of the Year competition. “Some of the entrants for the current competition came to give their support,” claimed the rookie. “They’re taking part in the semi-finals and were asking for advice. It was really nice to see people getting excited about the competition and be able to show them what it can do for their racing career.”
The final round of the Dunlop Sport Maxx Cup will take place on Sunday 28 September 2008 at Rockingham, Northamptonshire, and John hopes to finish the year on a high. “We’ve been really competitive, and I just hope that I can secure a win at the last round. It would definitely make my rookie season.”