JEWISS LEAVES IT LATE AT THRUXTON
Kiern Jewiss took his second win of the season in round seven of the F4 British Championship certified by FIA – powered by Ford EcoBoost at Thruxton, following a patient and tactical drive from third on the grid.
Jewiss found himself locked in a battle for victory with poleman Dennis Hauger (Arden), after the duo had got back ahead of the fast-starting Johnathan Hoggard (Fortec Motorsports) who had made his way up to the lead in the space of four corners on the opening lap from fifth on the grid.
Hauger defended valiantly, but Jewiss looked to be playing a tactical game. Having got the better of Hauger on lap four, Hauger hit back on lap eight to regain the lead.
Jewiss refused to let Hauger escape his clutches and positioned himself perfectly to benefit from a powerful slipstream down Brooklands straight.
The Double R ace left it until the last lap to pounce, getting the run on Hauger down Brooklands and into the final chicane. Hauger immediately tried to retaliate, but clipped the grass and made contact with Jewiss. It left the Arden racer careering into the tyre barriers while Jewiss maintained momentum through the chicane to take the chequered flag.
“I knew as long as he didn’t pull away from me all I had to do was stay calm,” said Jewiss.
“I had a big enough gap behind me which meant that I didn’t have to worry too much about defending and I could focus on how I was going to get into the lead.
“It was a long race and I had a long time to think about how I would pull off an overtake and manage my race.
“I could see that Hauger was sliding around and using up his tyres. That was perfect for me because I felt I was able to manage my tyres better. I drove smoothly while keeping him under pressure.
“I gave the overtake a go on the penultimate lap and lost a bit of momentum so I gave it my all on the last lap to give myself a chance to get by at the very end. Hauger got on the grass, hit the brakes and made contact with the rear of my car.
“Big thanks to Double R Racing, FM Conway, HCL and MB Partners for making this possible. We’re trying to score as many points as we can and hopefully we can come away from this weekend leading the championship.”
Ayrton Simmons performed an excellent exercise in damage limitation, having started 12th due to a 10-place grid penalty for causing contact at the Donington Park meeting three weeks ago.
The JHR Developments driver picked his way through the field expertly at the circuit in which he made his debut two years ago to stay at the top of the standings.
“I got a brilliant start,” said Simmons. “I tried to stay away from all the incidents and keep my head cool.
“I was hoping to get a top four finish in the race in an attempt to minimise the damage. I went from 12th to sixth on the first lap and that certainly helped make my life easier.
“It was all about planning my moves in what was a tricky race. It was really hot too so I had to focus on looking after the tyres as well.
“It was a very strategic race, but our strategy ended up paying off so I’m very pleased.
“I was a bit fortunate with what happened to Hauger, but I was in the right place at the right time and that’s what matters.”
Paavo Tonteri (Double R Racing) was back on the podium having been involved in frenetic battles with the likes of Simmons, Patrik Pasma and Johnathan Hoggard. The Finn beating the hard-charging Jack Doohan by just 0.194s to take third, as well as the Rookie class win.
“It was a pretty eventful race,” explained Tonteri. “I got a decent start. I made up some places to run as high as P3, but then Ayrton passed me.
“I was waiting for an opportunity to make a move and then on the last lap we saw some action up ahead with the leaders and that promoted me back up to third.
“The pace was really good, but we just weren’t quite in the right places at the right time to fight for the win.
“I lost some ground in the championship and the Rookie class standings at Donington Park with results not going my way, so it’s great to come back stronger here. It feels good to be back on the podium.”
Doohan was rapid and despite falling as far back as 10th, fought back to fourth. The Red Bull Junior Team driver set fastest lap of the race in the process, with a time of 1m 13.854s, which was just 0.102s off of the lap record.
The Aussie finished ahead of Arden team-mate Pasma who recovered well from a five-place grid penalty to end up fifth, having started 13th. His fifth place also earning him pole for tomorrow’s reverse-grid race.
Hoggard had to settle for sixth despite his opening lap heroics, ahead of third place rookie Josh Skelton (JHR Developments), Lucca Allen (Fortec Motorsports) and Jamie Sharp (Sharp Motorsport).
Sebastian Priaulx was a victim of his own success at the start. He flew off the grid from ninth, but found himself squeezed between Sebastian Alvarez (Double R Racing) and Manuel Sulaiman (JHR Developments). It resulted in all three taking to the pits, with Sulaiman and Alvarez eventually forced to retire. Priaulx persevered to score a point, ahead of Hampus Ericsson (Fortec Motorsports) who just missed out on a top 10 finish.