Sutton starts strongly with a victoryPosted: May 1, 2011
Porsche Carrera Cup championship leader James Sutton got off to a perfect start this afternoon at Thruxton by picking up his first win of the 2011 season to extend his points lead
Two-time winner Euan Hankey kept him honest all the way through the 21 lap encounter as the two held their positions at the start of the race, while behind them Stephen Jelley had made the best initial getaway.
Jelley made up a place on the grid past Jonas Gelzinis into turn one on his way up to third position, but he locked up going into the complex and dropped back behind the Lithuanian driver as he ran very deep into the corner.
Parker Racing with Juta’s Hankey began to show his nose to Sutton, and kept withi half a second for the first half of the race. However, he could not get close enough for an overtaking move, but he did not conceed his chase of Sutton even as the race drew to a close.
SAS Redline’s Sutton finally took his first win of the season by an eventual gap of just 0.4s as the top two took the flag.
Jelley finished in third place a further seven seconds back, but only after sustaining late pressure from Sutton’s team-mate Michael Meadows, who forced Jelley into a mistake at the final corner but could not take advantage.
Glzinis took Pro-am1 honours with fifth place overall ahead of reigning champion Tim Harvey, while Derek Pierce won a superb battle with Ahmad Al Harthy and Alex Martin after aggressively passing Al Harthy at the final chicane, almost allowing Martin through as well as the battle ran all the way to the flag.
Pro-am2 was a classic scrap also as Keith Webster took his first win of the year after sustaining pressure from Andrew Shelley, the pair rubbing panels down the start/finish straight at one point before Shelley was caught out by having to back off to stay behind a slow backmarker under yellow flags.