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Porsche Carrera Cup GB report, thruxton: 25/26 April

April 26th 2009

Porsche Carrera Cup GB
April 25th - 26th, 2009
Race Report

Michael Caine and Motorbase Performance stormed right into contention for the Porsche Carrera Cup GB during rounds three and four of the season at Thruxton over the weekend (25/26 April).

Michael Caine, David Bartrum, Ollie JacksonWith second in the opening race followed by a commanding victory in round four, Caine has catapulted himself right into the thick of the title contest. Most importantly, he twice beat Brands Hatch winner Tim Bridgman and now just five points cover the championship top three of Bridgman, Tim Harvey and Caine.

To complete a great weekend for Motorbase, Ollie Jackson ended the day on the pro-am1 podium after a gritty performance at a challenging circuit that he is still learning. To mark his 25th birthday, Jackson beat off some tough opposition for his place on the podium. Meanwhile, George Richardson missed the race weekend as he had no prior experience of Thruxton, but is due to rejoin the team for the next two races at Donington Park on 17 May.

In round three, run in front of a live TV audience on ITV4, Harvey beat poleman Bridgman into the first corner and quickly went clear as Caine challenged Bridgman for second. A superb passing move from Caine at the Complex on lap six put him through to second and he quickly set off in pursuit of Harvey, who was now more than three seconds clear.

Over the next 10 laps, Caine mounted a dogged pursuit of Harvey and lap-by-lap was able to rein the leader in. By lap 17, the gap was down to just 0.7s, but that was as close as it got when, with three laps to run, Caine realised he had a problem. "There was a big vibration in the car with three laps left and I wasn't sure what it was," said Caine. "I stopped pushing; it was my decision." Later inspection showed that rubber build up on one of the tyres was the cause of the vibration.

Caine was peerless in round four and won from the front after beating Bridgman into the first corner. Initially, Caine was under intense pressure from Bridgman and knew that he had to defend his lead hard over the opening laps. "I knew my car wasn't as good as Tim's in the early laps, so I just held on. But then my car was very good mid-race." While Harvey and Bridgman battled mightily for second, Caine made good his escape for a fine victory and one that leaves the early title race very evenly balanced.

Meanwhile, in the fiercely competitive pro-am1 category, Jackson was racing hard and took fifth in the opening race. However, he went even better in the second race to fend off Derek Pierce and bag third place to earn a visit to the podium. "That was a very busy race," said Ollie as climbed down from the podium. "It's not my favourite circuit, but we got there in the end!"

The Carrera Cup action continues at Donington Park on 16/17 May when the Motorbase Performance squad should be back to full strength with a three-car line-up.