Menu toggle


21 Sep 2022

Photos by Gary Hawkins

Multiple winners as Porsche series battle at Brands Hatch

Brands Hatch Indy September 17th 

It was the penultimate meeting of the season for the Petro-Canada Lubricants Porsche Club Championship with Pirelli and Porsche Club Motorsport Boxster Cup fields, and with championship points vital for the challengers, it was a tight and competitive race day with all four races having their share of drama.  Peter Morris and Chris Dyer took overall wins in the Club Championship, Paul Simpson and Andrew Porter taking class two wins and ensuring the championship battle goes down the final races.
In the Boxster Cup Darren Labbett narrowly won the first race after Graham Heard was given a penalty, while championship leader Pete Evans won race two and heads to the season finale in pole position for the title
Petro-Canada Lubricants Porsche Club Championship with Pirelli

Race One:

It was Strasse team-mates Chris Dyer and Pete Morris on the front row for the first Petro Canada Lubricants Porsche Club Championship with Pirelli race and it was Morris who won the sprint to the first corner, Dyer having to close the door on the fast-starting Kevin Harrison. Simon Clark was third with Harrison right behind him, and the lead four cars quickly opened a gap on the rest.
 Dyer was pushing his team-mate hard and had a look round the outside at Druids hairpin on lap six. Behind the flying lead quartet, James Caley was fifth in his Cayman, with the similarly mounted Matt Kyle-Henney closing in.
The leaders were lapping back-markers by lap 14 on the short Indy circuit, Morris using his experience to pick his way through and put cars between himself and his pursuers in the corners where possible. By lap 16 Kyle-Henney was past Caley and latched onto the back of the lead pack.
Into Druids on lap 21 Clark looked to get inside Dyer but made contact with the Cayman, damaging a wheel and putting Dyer out the race. This briefly gave Morris an advantage of over a second, and although he was reeled back in held on to take his fourth win of 2022, Clark second from Harrison, Kyle-Henney fourth.
“I got a good start and just had to keep pushing, I wasn’t thinking about saving tyres for race two!” said Morris. “I wasn’t holding anything back and just wanted a gap over the lighter cars, the backmarkers worked well for me – I enjoyed that.”
In class two Paul Simpson led early on, championship leader Tester losing ground after having to avoid a spinning class one car. Tester was still second at the end of lap one and started to close lap by lap on Simpson, while third was Bill Caley – back out in a class two Boxster as father James was racing his usual class one Cayman – who was battling with Angus Archer.
Archer was into third by lap 12 with Andrew Porter closing in, and those two ran close for much of the rest of the race. In the final laps Simpson had Tester right with him but held on to lead over the line by less than half a second for his first in of the season. Porter was into third with five laps to go but lost out right at the end when Archer got back into third as the pair encountered a backmarker.
“I got a good start” said Simpson, “and Colin Tester got bogged down then there was a spinning car that let me open a gap. He started closing up as we met backmarkers and a couple more laps and he might have had me.”
Race Two

It took two goes to get the second Club Championship race underway, red flags on the opening lap stopping the first attempt as two spinning class one cars triggered an incident that left cars stopped at the base of Paddock Hill Bend and a trail of fluid round the circuit. After a delay the race duration was reduced to 20-minutes, and from pole Dyer got away well and led into the first corner.
It was the same four cars close at the front as race one, as again Caley and Kyle-Henney fought over fourth. Dyer was under pressure but didn’t put a wheel out of place for lap after lap, Clark in second from Morris and Harrison.
As before Kyle-Henney moved into fifth and joined the train of cars behind Dyer and while gaps varied as they encountered back markers, they crossed the line with Dyer still ahead from Clark and Morris, the lead four covered by just eight tenths of a second, Kyle-Henney half a second further back in fifth.
“That was so hard – plus we sat on the grid for so long waiting for the restart,” said Dyer. “I got a better start second time but there was so much dust down to absorb the fluid on the track, and at times all I could see in my mirror was the dust being blown up. I had to work hard to stay clear, and it made up for this morning’s disappointment.” 
Again, Simpson got into the class two lead at the start, Tester this time close behind with Porter third. Simpson was having to hold off team-mate Tester in the early laps, which let Porter close in.
 The move of the race came on lap ten, as Tester made a move on Simpson into Druids, only for Porter to drive round the outside of the pair and emerge from the corner and down the hill to Graham Hill Bend ahead. Porter eased away for his first win of the year as Archer started to close on Simpson and Tester, those three covered by less than a second at the end.
“I felt I was quicker than them and they both went to the inside, I went round the outside and was quick down the hill,” said Porter about his winning move. “It’s my first year in the series and I have been learning the tyres, and in the last few races we have been getting quicker and quicker so great to take my first win.”
Porsche Club Motorsport Boxster Cup

Race One

Pete Evans and Darren Labbett were on the front row for the first Boxster Cup race of the weekend, but the best starts were made by the row two cars as Shiraz Khan and Sarah Thomson blasted past the cars ahead to be first and second into the first corner. Khan was ahead, for the first time in his short career.
A mistake on lap two dropped Khan down the order, Thomson taking the lead, also for the first time in a race, and looked in control as the first three edged away. A fastest race lap for Thomson on lap six was followed by a slide that saw her off and into the gravel, bringing out the safety car to close the field up, Darren King’s car also stopping out on the circuit with an alternator failure. 
Racing resumed on lap ten, Graham Heard now leading having moved ahead as the safety car boards came out.  Labbett was in second but Heard was able to ease away and was just under five seconds clear at the end, which proved crucial as he was given a five-second penalty for passing under a yellow flag that dropped him just behind Labbett – who took his third win of the season.
Third over the line was Pete Evans, who thus eased ahead in the title race with closest rival Mike Thompson only sixth after a battle with Wayne Gregory.
“I’m chasing second or third in the championship so decided to let the leader get away a bit as I could see Pete Evans behind,” explained Labbett. “If I has known he was going to get a penalty I wouldn’t have let him get away so much! An unexpected win but still a good one.”
Race Two

Labbett and Heard were contesting the early laps of the second race, Khan third. ON lap four the leaders touched at Druids and Khan was caught up in the aftermath, and with a car then going off at Clearways the race was halted with the grid set for the positions at the end of lap five.
Bizarrely there were only two cars on the grid, with Pete Evans lining up alone on the front few rows in fourth and Paul Watson further back, the eight other cars able to restart all lined up in the pitlane. With the pitlane starts only able to join the race once the two cars on the grid had gone past Evans had a handy lead, Watson second from Perry Darling at the end of lap one.
Evans stayed clear as behind the scrap for second saw place changes lap by lap, Darling heading four other cars. On lap 11 Darling went wide at Druids which let Wayne Gregory into second place, Darren King now up to fourth with Simon Ruffell-Ward, who had run as high as third, now fifth.
Evans stayed clear to take the win, and more importantly add a maximum score to his points tally, Gregory second over the line, the final result confirmed a long time after the race due to timing issues. In a stunning final lap Ruffell-Ward went round the outside of King at Druids, then ducked into Darling just two corners later to come home third and claim his first podium finish.
“It was very strange being alone on the grid!” said Evans. “After the restart I have never driven on a track with so much fluid down it, you just had to be careful and survive. Great points haul.”
“It was a crazy race,” said Gregory. “It was great racing and pleased to end up on the podium.”

“I was just fired up!” said Ruffell-Ward. “There was lots of coolant down after the incidents so I was holding back in some corners as there wasn’t much grip, but that was my first podium!
Petro-Canada Lubricants Porsche Club Championship with Pirelli Race One:
1 Pete Morris (997 C2S) 29 Laps
2 Simon Clark (996 C2) +0.214s
3 Kevin Harrison (996 C2)
4 Matt Kyle-Henney (Cayman S)
5 James Caley (Cayman S)
6 Andrew Muggeridge (996 C2)
Class Two:
1 Paul Simpson (Boxster S)
2 Colin Tester (Boxster S)
3 Angus Archer (Boxster S)
Fastest Lap: Harrison 51.591s (84.28mph).
Race Two:
1 Dyer 23 Laps.
2 Clark +0.173s
3 Morris
4 Harrison
5 Kyle-Henney.
Class Two:
1 Andrew Porter (Boxster S)
2 Simpson
3 Tester
Fastest Lap: Kyle-Henney 51.616s (84.24mph)

Porsche Club Motorsport Boxster Cup Race One
1 Darren Labbett (Boxster S) 24 Laps
2 Graham Heard (Boxster S) +0.003s
3 Pete Evans (Boxster S
4 Shiraz Kahn (Boxster S)
5 Wayne Gregory (Boxster S)
6 Mike Thompson (Boxster S)
Fastest Lap: Heard 55.606s (78.20mph).
Race Two:
1 Evans 13 Laps
2 Gregory
3 Simon Ruffell-Ward
4 Darren King
5 Perry Darling
6 Eric Bridges
Fastest Lap: Evans 56.592s (76.94mph).
Next Races: Donington Park, East Midlands, October 29th.