News

Hectic But Successful Weekend for Padmore

3rd June 2010

British racing driver Nick Padmore and team mate Jean-Lou Rihon came through a difficult V de V race at Motorland Aragon in Alcañiz, Spain at the weekend to finish in a well-deserved 6th place for the Norma UK squad.

Belgian Rihon started the 6 hour endurance but soon fell back to P17 with gearbox issues, finding himself rolling down the main straight for a number of laps in neutral, and losing a substantial amount of time. He brought the Norma M20F in to hand over to Reigate's Padmore, who drove faultlessly and clawed his way through the field up to 7th, then pitted to bring it back to Rihon for his second stint.

With the race beyond the halfway mark, Rihon grabbed P6 and handed back over to Padmore who held on to the position to the flag, despite having to pit in the latter stages to tape and secure a piece of rear bodywork, handing the team a strong result to build on for the next race at Ledonen, France in five week's time.

Not long after the race had finished Padmore had to fly straight back to Gatwick to get home in time for the Masters Historic Bank Holiday Monday meeting on the Brands Hatch GP circuit, where he was to share his family's privately-run 1965 Mini Cooper S with his father, Keith.

Earlier in the meeting, Padmore Sr. had qualified the car, securing 7th in class, and it was decided Padmore Jr. would be the one to leave the grid. By lap 2 he had claimed 2nd place after a quick getaway.

During his stint the handling of the car started to demise and Padmore Jr. also had dramas with the cockpit filling up with tyre smoke, but nevertheless provided some great racing before taking the car back to the pits to hand over to his father.

Padmore Sr. soon found himself in the daunting position of being hammocked between two heavy Mustangs but kept a cool head and improved on their qualifying position to finish 5th in class.

"What a great weekend!", said a satisfied Padmore Jr. We've really made a step forward with the Norma so it was good to finally get a result as there have been issues so far this season that have cost us some good finishes.

"The 6hr race was tough as Jean-Lou and I had to really nurse the car throughout with the gearbox problems, so the plan was really just to make it to the end. Jean-Lou drove a great race and kept his times consistent so he could hand a healthy car over to me.

"Despite our problems the car is getting better all the time and the team are constantly working hard so there's definitely more to come from us this season.

"As for Brands, the Mini is always great fun to drive, but obviously completely different to the Norma, and we had mega race mixing it with the Mustangs, Galaxies and Cortinas. Dad had an interesting battle with the two Mustangs at the end and they eventually squashed him to get past but it was all in aid of great racing! I can't wait to get back in the car!"

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