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Racing Report

Super Coupe Series - Renault 5 GT Turbo

Silverstone - Sunday August 25th
Stowe Circuit

Driver : Denise Manderscheid, Car No: 96
Comment :Typical August bank holiday weather - wet windy and changeable! It all helped to make for an interesting race.

Qualifying: Despite the threat of rain it kept dry for qualifying - being in traffic again, not knowing the circuit and travelling anti-clockwise for a change all added up to a different experience for me made all the more interesting because 1 had been unable to race for the previous 2 + months due to mechanical problems. 1 completed qualifying not feeling particularly comfortable with my efforts. However, I still managed a lap time of 48.12 versus 46.57 from Steve Alderton who took pole position.

Race Day: While the morning stayed dry the afternoon was not destined to be the same. It poured down just as the first couple of races started. For a while I thought it would dry out enough for me to stay on slicks but no, just as the race prior to mine was called it was chucking it down again. This caused a sudden mad flurry in the paddock as we all changed from slicks to wets! Kevin Taylor in a VW Polo was just leaving the pits for his race, one prior to mine, but was hampered by a broken exhaust - his response (quite rightly) was to rip the offending part off. Nice one Kevin - have some good pictures of that.

Having changed from slicks to wets there was no time for me to hang around, it was off to the holding area and a fairly long wait to go out on the track to be lined up for our two green flag laps. The appalling weather meant they gave us two laps to get used to track and damp conditions, before our rolling start. Being right at the back both helped and hindered me. Never having raced in such conditions I was not prepared for the amount of spray kicked up by everyone. At the rolling start everyone else took off and 1 was left momentarily thinking - 'where is everyone....' Sharp inhalation of breath followed by foot to the floor. 1 thought 1 must find them ahead somewhere even if 1 only see their tail-lights and sure enough 1 caught up with their tail lights at the first corner. Tony Hart, Chris Grahame and Bob Smith had exchanged body blows. Bob was not destined to get any further than the first corner while Tony Hart continued on round with a front bumper dragging. He subsequently stopped in at the Pits and removed his bumper. Chris Grahame got away with a somewhat remodelled left-hand side of his car.

Meanwhile yours truly here was having loads of fun...... 1 caught up with Mark Cox and we swopped places a couple of time during the first 15 laps. Just as 1 thought 1 had him and would get passed for the final time 1 lost it at the esses. Spun out, killed the engine and lost valuable time getting back on the track. Drat! By this time 1 was lapped by the leaders and had to be content with following lan Fawcett for the remainder of the race. Tried to get past Ian but track conditions got worse. more like a greasy skid pan.

Nevertheless 1 finished and 1 really, really enjoyed it. Final result for me was 8th. I returned home a very happy bunny with a car still intact - yes a very happy bunny.

Looking forward now to Thruxton on September 15th. Should be another challenge for me as 1 haven't tested on that circuit either.

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