No Formula Renault UK in 2012 after entry shortagePosted: March 28, 2012
The single seater series has come off the back of a year which saw a low turnout of cars on the grid, with entries as low as 12 for most of the season.
This all comes in spite of a Winter series that saw an impressive grid of 25 cars head to Snetterton, the series won by Oliver Rowland, but when the media day arrived, an entry list of only six drivers: Josh Webster, Josh Hill, Shahaan Engineer, Dan de Zille, Jake Dennis and Gabriel Casagrande has since meant organisers have taken the drastic decision of cancelling the series for 2012.
With one of the series’ top squads, Manor Competition pulling out of the series that has seen them taste success with the likes of Lewis Hamilton in the past, grid numbers have seemingly failed to improve on last season, leaving organisers to pull the plug on the series for the meantime.
The shock news has therefore left Fortec motorsport (who were running four of these six drivers) in the dumps following their record-breaking season with Alex Lynn and Oliver Rowland, Lynn taking 14 wins on his way to the 2011 title, now preparing to compete in British F3 with the squad.
With the start of the BTCC season only two weekends away, debate will surround a possible replacement support series for the 2012 season, but as of yet there will be no replacement.
Dixon heads healthy Clio field in testing:
James Dixon set the pace in last Tuesday’s pre-season Renault Clio Cup UK test at Brands Hatch’s Indy circuit, heading a very healthy 23-car field for his new team Scuderia Vittoria.
The field was very tightly bunched throughout the session, Dixon’s time of 52.055s enough to head Pyro’s Jack Goff, Josh Files and Adam Bonham, as the top 10 were separated by less than half a second.
James Colburn, another man who was in contention for the title in last year’s final round, went fifth quickest having topped the times early in the session for the same Westbourne Motorsport squad he raced with in 2011, ahead of 20Ten Racing newcomer Josh Cook.
Late 2011 sensation Ant Whorton-Eales will now partake in a full season with Westbourne Motorsport, and went seventh quickest. Elsewhere, Ginetta GT Supercup driver Aaron Williamson set the 12th fastest time for Finesse Motorsport Ltd, while Jake Giddings makes the step from Ginetta Junior into Clios with the same team, finishing in the top 10 in ninth place.
Nicholas Hamilton will compete in his second year in the series (and indeed car racing for that matter), and showed very encouraging pace on the day as he broke into the top 10 with a time of 52.496s that put him eighth quickest.
Ex Mini racers Finlay Crocker and Vic Covey step into the series, setting 16th and 17th best times, while Porcshe racer Tautvydas Barstys could only manage the penultimate spot for Juta Racing in 22nd.
1. James DIXON Scuderia Vittoria 52.055
2. Jack GOFF Team Pyro 52.098
3. Josh FILES Team Pyro 52.158
4. Adam BONHAM Team Pyro 52.171
5. James COLBURN Westbourne Motorsport 52.259
6. Josh COOK 20Ten Racing 52.394
7. Ant WHORTON-EALES Westbourne Motorsport 52.484
8. Nic HAMILTON Total Control Racing 52.496
9. Jake GIDDINGS Finesse Motorsport Ltd 52.519
10. Kim ANDERSSON Team Pyro 52.525
11. Rob SMITH Total Control Racing 52.526
12. Aaron WILLIAMSON Finesse Motorsport Ltd 52.573
13. William DAVISON Westbourne Motorsport 52.680
14. Mike BUSHELL Mike Bushell 52.784
15. Adam GOULD Stancombe Vehicle Engineering 52.921
16. Finlay CROCKER Scuderia Vittoria 52.979
17. Vic COVEY Scuderia Vittoria 52.987
18. Ronnie KLOS Scuderia Vittoria 53.015
19. Ignas GELZINIS Juta Racing 53.145
20. Darren WILSON 20Ten Racing 53.357
21. Mark TILBURY Silver Fox Racing 53.582
22. Tautvydas BARSTYS Juta Racing 54.556
23. Simon BELCHER Handy Motorsport with Pyro 55.148