Dominik Jackson looks to continue his flying form at Oulton Park on Saturday 20th July, after turning the 2019 Radical Challenge title fight back in his favour at Spa-Francorchamps last month. A repeat of his 2018 hat-trick at the Belgian circuit returns him to the top of the table and nearly 100 points clear of Jérôme de Sadeleer heading into the halfway season marker.
One hundred points may sound a lot, but with 80 points up for grabs in each endurance race, there’s still everything to play for at Oulton Park. With qualifying, two 50-minute endurance battles plus a 20-minute sprint race to squeeze into one day, clean and clear drives will be key to a healthy points haul at the Cheshire track.
De Sadeleer will be aiming to do just that with 360 Racing after a disappointing home round in Belgium, where he was forced to record his first non-finish since last August. Yet the former SR1 Cup champion refused to be kept away from the podium, scoring second in the sprint race. Having earned top-three status at Oulton last year, de Sadeleer will be gunning for glory.
Jac Constable encountered the trickiest weekend of his maiden Challenge season at the Spa Festival, recording his first DNF. But the Hart GT driver bounced back with a stand-out drive from the back of the grid to finish second in race three, ensuring a 32 point lead over John MacLeod in the standings. RAW Motorsport’s MacLeod has become an increasing threat this term, taking a brace of third places in the Spa endurance races to seal four podiums from the last six encounters.
Mark Richards returns to 360 Racing having missed the last two rounds due to work commitments, and he could throw a spanner in the works for the rest of the year. A winning contender at Donington Park back in April, he’ll be looking to return to the rostrum and make up for lost points.
He comments: “It’s always exciting to get out there racing, it’s just a shame I couldn’t be at the last two rounds. It will be difficult to challenge for the overall title from here, but I look forward to stealing some points off Dom and Jerome – they can’t have them all! I love Oulton Park, it’s a proper old-school circuit that favours the brave and punishes mistakes…let’s hope it doesn’t rain! I’m hoping that this will be the weekend where I get that elusive win, but any podium spot is a privilege given the calibre of drivers on the grid.”
The midfield fight is tighter than ever this year with a strong gaggle of drivers honing in on a place in the top three. Count Brian Caudwell, Elliot Goodman, Spencer Bourne, John Caudwell, Jason Rishover, Brian Murphy and Rod Goodman among them, while newcomer Jon MacRae proved his rookie potential with third in the sprint race in Belgium.
Oli Marateotto is back in the Solo class, after competing as a Team entry with father, Marcello, last time out. Guillaume Gruchet also returns to the Challenge fold as the Frenchman takes on his second Radical outing following his Snetterton debut with Newbridge Motorsport.
In the Team class battle, Gulf Radical Cup drivers Anton Zakharov and Amir Feyzullin - both from Russia - pair up for the second time following their inaugural outing at Spa. The reignited Team class fight has also attracted Toyo Tires Porsche Championship drivers, Nick Hull and Richard Avery, as a privateer entry.
Currently third in the Supersport Boxster class, Hull explains how he and fellow Porsche front-runner Avery are searching for a new adventure, backed by York-based Thermotech Building Maintenance (TBM) Limited. “Having raced in Porsche championships for nine years, I fancied a bit of a change. A friend, Guillaume Gruchet, recently joined Radical Challenge so I took a closer look and realised the championship could be a really good option,” says Nick.
“I did a trial day at Doinington Park in the SR3 RSX last month. I had a brilliant amount of seat time and, with coaching from Roger Bromiley, I made really good progress. With three races in one day at Oulton Park, I asked Richard to team up with me. Friday testing will be our first chance to get to grips with the car, but with some help from multiple Radical champion, Bradley Smith, we hope to get up to speed. At top ten finish would be nice but we’re coming along to have some fun!”
A bumper day of Radical Challenge action at Oulton Park on Saturday 20 July starts with qualifying at 09:35 ahead of the first 50-minute endurance race at 11.00. The 20-minute sprint race takes place at 13.05, with the final battle of the day at 15.40. Follow the Radical Sportscars social media channels for updates. Live timing is available at www.tsl-timing.com