The Silverstone National Circuit hosted the first round of the 2021 Gaz Shocks 116Trophy series on the 25th April. Perfect conditions welcomed the bumper, 32 car grid of immaculately prepared BMW machines.
The 2021 spec 116Trophy machines feature a new intake system from the two litre engine and a map to suit. Not only has the significantly reduced lap times and sharpened throttle response. It’s also bought the field closer than ever. Second to thirteenth in qualifying were separated by the less than a second.
After a twenty-five minute qualifying session, pole position went to the 777 machine of Sam Carrington-Yates and Mark Sullivan. Second went to Mark Burton, the former Locost champion, entering his first 116Trophy race. On the second row was Anthony Seddon and Alan Corfield alongside Alex and Guy Povey. Row three was occupied by Rob Carvell and Simon Walker-Hansell.
As the cars crossed the line to begin the race, an enthusiastic start by Yates and Povey saw them immediately into first and second. Third place seemingly occupied by the next six cars as they battled ferociously. As they entered lap two, the field were closer than ever, with every single car fighting for position. Just as the pit window opened, fluid was dropped at Maggots and Louis Woodward, who had been racing hard in the lead group, had an unfortunate spin.
After thirty-five minutes Anthony Seddon headed down the pit lane, the first to stop from the leading battle. A few minutes later the 41 car entered the pit lane with a puncture. Swift work by forty40racing saw a wheel change and new driver installed and the car was on it’s with no time lost.
As the race approached the closing of the pit window Walker-Hansell led from Mark Burton by less than a second, with the top five covered by twenty seconds after an hour and quarter of racing.
For the next fifteen minutes the top two were never separated by more than half a second, with the last lap and a half completed side by side. Mark Burton took an incredible win on his series debut, followed by Walker-Hansell in second and the Povey car in third place. Phew!
The fastest lap was claimed by Sam Carrington Yates in the 777. The driver of the day award goes to jack and Christopher Godden. The father and son team piloting the number 71 machine, which was the 116Trophy guest car from 2020. They qualified an amazing 12 in their debut race, briefly led and finished a credible 9th. An amazing effort!
The next race is at Donington Park on May 23rd, where Walker-Hansell will be seeking redemption.