Former kart racer James Lay made a sensational car racing debut at Snetterton, racing his father’s Radical SR1 into second place on both Radical SR1 Cup outings.
Quickest of the RAW Motorsports trio, Lay started the first race from second on the grid, and was in hot pursuit of poleman Will Hunt for the early part of the race.
Gradually the gap widened, but Lay was still delighted with a solid second place on his debut.
“I had a good start, but there was no real chance of me catching Will and I was under no threat behind, so just kept it safe,” he explained after taking the flag 4.341 secs down.
Team mate Nick Zapolski had a disappointing and rather solitary race in a race long sixth however. “I didn’t feel comfortable in the car, with my set up, it didn’t suit my style of driving, but I hadn’t sorted it out in qualifying,” he said.
Gavin McAlpine also held on to a top 10 finish, despite a slight excursion. “I lost two places on the Bentley Straight, when a car came alongside into Brundle and left me nowhere to go, so I went straight on,” he said after slipping back to 10th on the last lap.
In race two Lay started from pole, but Hunt’s experience told as the lights went out and he nosed ahead into Riches.
It was a much closer race though with Hunt under some heavy pressure from a determined Lay. There was little between them, but Lay wasn’t quite within striking distance.
The gap opened slightly but a strong finish from Lay saw them take the flag only 1.949 secs apart.
“It was a good day for me and I think I learned a lot,” he said as he celebrated his second podium of the day.
Zapolski had settled into an early seventh and was sixth by the end of lap five. His pace continued to lose him ground on the quintet ahead and after seven laps he headed for the pits.
“The car was stuck in gear. I had a bit of a problem with it earlier, but with so little time between qualifying and the two races, the crew did their best to fix it with very little time. It seemed OK when the race started,” he said.
Once again McAlpine was batting just inside the top 10, but a couple of spins cost him dearly. “I braked into Agostini’s, locked up and went straight on, so that lost me a couple of places, then I went off again at Agostini’s too,” he said after taking the flag 12th.
The next round of the Championship is at Brands Hatch on May 8th /9th.