Seb Perez showed strong pace and fighting spirit in rounds three and four of the KICK Start Energy Ginetta Junior Championship at Donington Park over the weekend (18/19 April).
The Chesterfield-based teenager was racing at his home track for the first time in a fiercely competitive 25-car field for the Ginetta Junior Championship, which is contested by 14 to 17 year-old racers.
Although his final race results did not reflect his true pace, Seb was pleased with progress and was able to show the potential to move into the top 10 in the championship.
“Qualifying was good, but there was a red flag four minutes from the end of the session,” said Seb. “We had been P15 and we had an amazing lap coming together when someone cut me up. That’s bound to happen at some stage in these cars.” His best lap left him 18th on the grid, but only nine-tenths of a second away from the pole position time.
Race one on Saturday afternoon started well. “I made a couple of places into the first corner to get up to P15,” said Seb. “Going into the second lap someone pushed me off onto the grass and I ended up spinning. That put me at the back, 20 seconds behind the leaders but I got my head down and got into a rhythm and made up a couple of places.” More important than the final race position of 15th was the fact that Seb set the 11th best race lap.
Race two ran in front of live TV cameras on Sunday and was full of action from the very start. “We were going really well in the early laps and managed to get up to 12th,” said Seb.” I was just about to overtake another car and went into the chicane just a little bit too quick and caught the kerb on the inside.
“I saved the first part of it, but then it went the other way and got onto the grass and spun. Everyone went flying past and then I just tried to catch as many people as I could. But the races are very short, so it’s very hard to come back from something like that.”
His final result of 20th place did not truly reflect his speed. “Overall the pace has been good and we’re really pleased with progress this weekend. I’m ready for Thruxton now and we’ve done a couple of tests there. There are two places you absolutely need to nail and then the rest of it is just flat out!”
The KICK Start Energy Ginetta Junior Championship continues at Thruxton (Hampshire) over the weekend of 9/10 May.