Three dramatic races in front of the large crowd at the Festival of Porsche saw Pete Morris crowned the overall Baylis & Harding Porsche Club Champion with Pirelli champion for 2014, the Tamworth racer winning two races in his Strasse-tended 996 C2 to wrap up the title. Twice a class champion in previous seasons, Morris arrived at Brands Hatch having never finished outside the top three overall in a race this season, and while he lost that record with a sixth place finish in race two, scored enough points to seal the 2014 title.
“I’m over the moon, what can I say?” said Morris, “I’ve been trying to win this championship for long enough! I knew I needed two first places today, and it was a bit unnerving when I had the issues in race two and finished off the podium for the first time.
“It’s been a lot of effort and hard work, I have won the class twice but never taken the overall title before, but if you are going to win a title then winning from sixth on the grid isn’t bad. I kept the tyres cool for the first ten minutes then pushed on.
“It’s been a great year in a great championship. EMC have built me a great engine, it just sings to me in the car, and Strasse have done me proud looking after the car.”
The class two points were close – Stuart ings and Mark Koeberle tied after dropped scores, series officials are now working out to see who takes the title on number of class wins.
Race OneMorris was on pole for race one but didn’t make the best of starts, Bradshaw moving ahead with Sumpter into second and Morris recovering to third by the end of the first lap. Morris passed Sumpter on lap three as Bradshaw pulled clear at the front, Adrian Slater fourth heading a five car train battling for position.
The race changed with seven laps to go as Bradshaw’s pace slowed, his 996 losing power, Morris closing and going past on lap 25. Sumpter also went past with three laps to go to take second, Bradshaw just holding onto third ahead of Slater.
Ings was on the Class Two pole but pulled off after the green flag lap with a driveshaft failure, Andy Toon taking the class win with Richard Higgins going past Mark Koeberle on the final lap to take second.
Race TwoWith Bradshaw’s engine issues proving terminal, Morris had the front row to himself for race two, but was swamped by the Paragon 964 C2s of Sumpter and Slater at the start to drop to third, Mark McAleer then going past to nudge the points leader further down the order. Morris fought his way back up to second, passing McAleer at Druids on lap 10, and was then right with the leader.
A look into Sumpter at Paddock Hill Bend on lap 13 saw Morris slide, the car then going the other way and spinning off, dropping him down the order. Sumpter went onto win from McAleer and Slater, while Morris recovered up the order, after a clash with John McCullagh at Druids, to take sixth.
A repaired Ings took Class two, but only after Toon, who had passed Ings into Surtees in lap 11, had pulled off on the run up to Druids. Koeberle took second in class, with Higgins third.
Race ThreeSumpter was on pole for the final race of the season with Morris down in sixth on the grid, and at the start the poleman led away with McAleer behind and Slater third, but by lap two Slater was second with Paul Winter third, Morris up to fifth behind McAleer.
Morris continued his charge up the order, taking the lead by going inside Sumpter at Druids on lap 15, and going on for his second win of the day. McAleer also went past to take second, pushing Morris hard in the final laps, Sumpter third ahead of Slater.
Ings led all the way in class two, Korberle coming second and Higgins once more taking third.The day finished with a one-off two driver race, the Auto Fuel Fix Trophy Challenge, which was won by Mark and Sagan Cowne who started their 997 GT£ Cup from the pitlane after a clutch problem during qualifying and climbed through the order to win from Dave Whelen’s 993 RSR.
Baylis & Harding Porsche Club Championship with Pirelli Round 14: 1 Pet Morris (996 C2); 2 Mark Sumpter (964 C2) +12.159s; 3 Tom Bradshaw (996 C2); 4 Adrian Slater (964 C2); 5 John McCullagh (Boxster S); 6 Richard Ellis (993 C2); 7 Kevin Harrison (996 C2); 8 Paul Winter (996 C2); Chris Dyer (Cayman S); 10 Jonathan Evans (Boxster S). Class Winners: Morris, Andy Toon (968 CS); John Williams (Carrera RS). Fastest Lap: Bradshaw 51.335s (84.71mph).
Round 15: 1 Sumpter; 2 Mark McAleer (96 C2) +0.739s; 3 Slater; 4 Ellis; 5 Winter; 6 Morris; 7 Evans; 8 Harrison; 9 David Botterill (964 C2); Dyer. Class Winners: Sumpter; Ings; Williams. Fastest Lap: Morris 51.988s (83.64mph).
Round 16: 1 Morris; 2 McAleer +0.325s; 3 Sumpter; 4 Slater; 5 Winter; 6 Ellis; 7 Harrison; 8 Dyer; 9 McCullagh; 10 Botterill. Class Winners: Morris; Ings; Wiliams. Fastest lap: Morris 51.501s (84.43mph).
Auto Fuel Fix Trophy Challenge: 1 Cowne / Cowne (997 GT3 Cup); 2 Dave Whelan (993 RSR) +41.742s; 3 Poels / Abbring (964 RS); 4 Luke Johnson (944 S2); 5 David Botterill (944 Turbo); 6 Stephens / Taylor (Boxster S); 7 Ed van Heusden (964 RS); 8 Demetriou / Evans (Boxster S); 9 Guess / Dietz (968 CS); 10 Eric in den Bosh (944 S2). Class Winners: Cowne / Cowne; Demetriou / Evans; Johnson. Fastest Lap: Cowne / Cowne 51.687s (84.12mph).
Next Event: Porsche Club Motorsport Awards Dinner, November 22nd.