Motorbase Performance battled back from a tough start to the second half of the Porsche Carrera Cup GB season at Thruxton to claim a sensational seventh podium of the year at the Hampshire speedbowl (August 17-18).
Taking to the UK’s fastest circuit for the first time during Friday’s wet practice sessions, the Motorbase duo set an impressive pace in the 911 (Type 991) GT3 Cup Cars, with Plato and Vaughan going on to secure second and third-row starts in qualifying in P4 and P5 respectively.
A heavy downpour on Sunday morning left the track drying but still wet with standing water in places. Taking to the grid on slicks for the formation laps with the threat of more rain, Plato and Vaughan made the call to pit and change to wets.
Starting from the pit-lane alongside Roche, the trio made great gains in the early laps and quickly moved up through the field and into the race lead. However, with the rain failing to materialise the rapidly drying track started to reward the slick-tyre runners and Plato and Vaughan battled hard to curtail their plummet down the order, eventually crossing the line in P8 and P10.
A sensational fightback from Plato during a dry second race was rewarded with a return to the rostrum for the Motorbase-man. A clean start by the 26-year-old allowed him to pick his way up through the pack avoiding an opening lap melee, before making his move on Perez on lap 8 to steal into podium contention. Taking the final flag in P3, Plato secured his sixth podium of the season so far.
Vaughan made steady progress over the 20 lap challenge, making up an impressive 4 places to cross the line in P6, collecting his second points score of the weekend.
Plato and Motorbase remain in the hunt for the Championship titles as the season charges into the second half, with the Silverstone GP circuit next on the agenda for rounds 11 and 12 on August 31/September 1.
#11 Lewis Plato:
“We had a few issues with the data beacon in qualifying. Nothing to do with the team, but with some components, which affected our data reading, unfortunately. I think without those we would have been a bit further up the grid.
“We took a risk in race 1 to run on wets and it sadly didn’t pay off. I was a hero for 5 laps and then a zero for 15. We just had to hang on. We had good pace in race 2 and thankfully managed to work our way back up to get onto the podium. We’ve had a podium at every meeting so far this season, and holding 2nd in the championship quite well.
“It was nice to be able to let the car stretch its legs a little bit. This weekend was the best that the car has been all year.”
#55 Dan Vaughan:
“We had a good day in qualifying. We’re quick in the wet here and I think in the first race if it had stayed wet we’d have been in with a very good chance of winning. Going into today I expected some good results and we’ve come away with a couple of average results. So it’s a bit disappointing.”
“I just couldn’t quite understand the car in the second race. I was struggling with the balance of it, in the high speed and slow speed areas. That’s all there is here, it’s either flat chat or first gear. It’s just a learning experience I guess.
“I enjoyed racing here. It’s not as intimidating as a place as I first thought.”
#11 Lewis Plato:
Round 9: P8
Round 10: P3
#55 Dan Vaughan:
Round 9: P10
Round 10: P6
1 Dan Harper JTR 102 points
2 Lewis Plato Motorbase Performance 67 points
6 Dan Vaughan Motorbase Performance 36 points
1 JTR 265 points
2 Motorbase Performance 241 points
3 Amigos Redline Racing 222 points