Karl Rossin liked the taste of his first Toyo Tires BRSCC Porsche Championship victory so much, he repeated his performance in the second race on Sunday.
With no testing available on the Friday it was straight into qualifying for most of the Toyo Porsche Championship drivers on Saturday morning and Richard Avery – currently leading in the Race Boxster class – took pole with Ed Hayes and Adam Croft rounding off the top three. Philip Grayson managed to beat Jayson Flegg to the Class B pole, albeit by just 0.19 seconds. Jayson suffered a shattered screen and dented roof when his bonnet broke loose and he was lucky to find and fit a replacement screen in time for Race 1. In the 924s Nizar El-Chamaa’s purple car was in front of Peter Smith and Karl Rossin with their current table leader Simon Hawksley in 4th.
The first of our two races took place in hot and humid conditions with many of the cars were fighting for grip on the notoriously slippery Northamptonshire circuit and it wasn’t long into the race that a serious collision occurred at the long Gracelands left-handed between four of the Class A Boxsters, resulting in serious damage to newcomer Ben Van Den Bos’ car and that of #99 Graham Heard. Also affected was the already unlucky Jayson Flegg and Garry Lawrence, although not directly damaged, was prevented from joining the restart due to gravel caught in his wheel rims.
The race was red flagged and the restarted 15 minute race saw Richard Avery take the overall win with Ed Hayes and Jonathan Greensmith completing the Class A podium having swapped places in a gripping race. Nick Hull landed a season-best 4th. With Jayson Flegg out of the running, Philip Grayson won in Class B with Flegg’s team-mate Mark Marshall 2nd and Bernie Printy third.
Karl Rossin managed to squeeze past Simon Hawksley at Chapman Curve and held him off to the flag, landing himself his first Championship win. David Jones took third in the 924s.
Overnight rain took the sting out of the temperature but made sure the track stayed slippy with on-and-off showers meaning dicey conditions for all of Sunday’s race. Ironically, the worse conditions of the weekend saw not a single DNF – although the BRSCC safety car was deployed at one point when visibility became so poor.
Paul Bravo’s team had worked so hard on Flegg’s doubly-damaged Boxster they omitted to check their own car and his 924 didn’t make it to the grid. Karl Rossin risked ridicule by spinning on one of the two (wet race) green flag laps and was required to start the race from the back of the grid. But all this appeared to do was spur him on and again he took the Class C win.
In the Class Bs, Jayson Flegg showed what a class driver he is by not only taking the Production win but also finishing 5th overall, in front of four Class A Boxsters. Philip Grayson was second and Fleggy’s team-mate Mark Marshall third – although he’d tapped the barrier and had to be checked over at the medical centre after the race. Jonathan Greensmith finally got the better of both Richard Avery and Ed Hayes to take the Race Boxsters win but Adam Croft, beset with terrible luck this season, returned to the Rockingham podium again with a 3rd behind Avery leaving Hayes 4th.
The assembled drivers took great pleasure in congratulating Karl on his double and Philip Grayson on his first win. The weekend’s action hots up the championship tables and in Class A Richard Avery has Ed Hayes in hot pursuit with Nick Hull now third thanks to his consistent finishes. Jayson Flegg is starting to pull away in the Class B Boxsters and in the 924s David Jones and Karl Rossin will be trying hard to catch Simon Hawksley, with just 22 points separating the mid-table drivers Peart, El-Chamaa, Smith, Waters and Kirkham.
Next outing for the Championship is Anglesey – join us for more thrilling Porsche racing.
Words and photos: Chris Valentine