Updated: Aug 28
HATTRICK HAND THE STAR AT SILVERSTONE
JSCC leader Charlie Hand showed his class in the seasons first triple header at Silverstone last weekend, adding all three wins to his seasons tally.
In Saturday’s race it was side by side into Copse between Hand and Harvey Caton, before Alfie Jeakins snatched second into Becketts, with Will Redford squeezed out.
Hand was able to gain an early gap at Luffield as everyone else was contesting second.
The top five of Hand, Jeakins, Caton, Ruben Hage and Oliver Cottam were clear by the end of lap two, despite lead rookie Loui Hounsell doing his best to hold on.
But with Travis Chapman and Arwen Graham off at Brooklands, out came the safety car for three laps.
It was a green flag for lap seven and normal service was resumed with Hand making a break and Caton on Jeakins tailgate for second, as the lead started to gap Hage and Cottam.
Jeakins managed to drop Caton and gave his all to challenge Hand’s supremacy. But at the flag it was Hand’s victory by just 0.439 secs over Jeakins, with Caton and Hage in third and fourth.
Cottam saw off a brief threat from Hounsell to retain fifth and after finishing seventh on the road, Aaron Walker’s track limits penalty dropped him to 12th, promoting Jacob Heap, Harvey Dent, Harry Hickton and Chloe Grant to complete the top 10, almost line astern at the flag.
It was anyone from four through Copse on the opening lap of race two, as Hand just kept Jeakins, Hage and Caton at bay.
Caton was third on the run through Maggotts, but defending from Hage at Becketts dropped them both down the order and gave the lead pair a telling break.
Redford was into third, but under tremendous pressure, from Cottam and Tommy Gilham, with the recovering Caton and Hage in sixth and seventh.
Jeakins repeatedly tried the inside into Brooklands to get the better of Hand, but each time it was covered.
Redford was able to consolidate third too as Cottam came under fire from Caton.
A change of tactics from Jeakins on lap four saw an attempt on Hand’s lead on the inside of Copse, it failed and a lap later the tow was broken.
Cottam was just holding off Caton for fourth, but both had caught Redford. Into Becketts Cottam was briefly third but received a tap under braking from Redford, sending him briedly sideways and dropping him to seventh.
Suddenly it was five cars for third, Redford, Caton, Hounsell, Hage and Cottam, the latter three taking Brooklands three abreast on lap seven.
Hand got away on the closing laps to head Jeakins by 3.117 secs, but third on the road Redford was handed a track limit penalty, so Caton completed the podium, from Hounsell, Hage and Cottam.
Redford had dropped to seventh, while Jack Meakin, Gilham and Jamie Petters rounded off the top 10.
Having pushed Hand hard in both races, Jeakins was keen for a repeat in the third and final race.
Although Hand’s initial get away was probably his best, Jeakins was under pressure for second from Hage and Caton into Copse.
Jeakins managed to shake them off as the lead duo escaped again, with Caton and Cottam pressing Hage for third
But it was side by side for the lead down the Wellington Straight on lap two, and as Jeakins dived down the inside at Brooklands, Hand was sideways, but still held the lead into Luffield.
The challenge had allowed Hage to join them again and within a lap it was five for the lead and another five contesting sixth place.
The gap between the lead pair and the Hage v Caton duel for second tended to fluctuate as Cottam started to lose ground in fifth.
It was fairly comfortable in the end as Hand took win number three, but Jeakins proved again his dominance with his third second place of the weekend too.
Hage had just held onto third, but was another victim to track limits. So Cottam secured his first podium of the weekend, with Hounsell having ousted Caton too for fourth on the last lap.
Jamie Goode’s perseverance was rewarded with sixth behind Caton, followed by Walker, Meakin and Redford, with Hage classified 10th.