Starting from the front row the Cornish racer was immediately in the thick of the fight for the lead with poleman Oliver York and eventual race winner Jamie Caroline. However, he dropped to fourth early on as drivers behind him benefited from the slipstreaming effect down the 2.3-mile circuit’s long straights. The 16-year-old kept his cool though and turned the tables to make his way back up to second and pull clear of the field as he hunted down Caroline for the lead.
Having qualified sixth Piastri could not make the progress he hoped for, finding himself caught up in a closely fought midfield tussle. It involved five drivers including team-mate Ayrton Simmons, which prevented him from running in clear air and showcasing his true pace for much of the race.
Simmons made a promising start from tenth, gaining several places, but soon found himself on the grass after being pushed out wide. He fought back brilliantly to come through the field and join the battle for fourth with Oscar Piastri. The TRS Arden drivers were separated by just 0.248s as they crossed the line with Piastri seventh and Simmons eighth.
Quinn’s second place earns him a fifth third row grid slot for the reverse grid race at 12:52 today. He will start from pole in the weekend finale at 16:25 having recorded the quickest second fastest lap of any driver in qualifying. Piastri will line up seventh and fifth for the respective races with Simmons in eighth and tenth. Both races will be broadcast live on ITV4.
Alex Quinn: “I got a bit of luck, but I think I drove a good race. At the very beginning when I was at the front it was hard to keep people behind because of the slipstream, but when I was further back down the order I could use the slipstream to get past. I think second is the best we could have done in that race. Jamie managed to break the tow to get clear, but I was gradually closing him down in the final laps which was positive. From about half race distance I managed to get away from the pack and could get a better feel for the car in clear air which was good. We start from fifth in the reverse grid race which is a good place to be with the tow being such a key factor here.”
Oscar Piastri: “I would describe that race as eventful. It wasn’t quite the result I was looking for, but I still managed to bring home decent points. In qualifying I didn’t quite get the perfect lap in and we were confident after the session that there was more to come. It was tough out there and it felt like I got caught up in some really tight situations which didn’t play out in my favour, but that’s the way it goes sometimes. I wasn’t really able to capitalise on other people’s mistakes either so I’m looking forward to the next races which will hopefully go better for me. It’s frustrating to not get the result I want, but it’s still more points on the board. I’ll look to get even more and maybe even my first win.”
Ayrton Simmons: “It was a really entertaining race, especially for the people watching it. I got a really good start which helped to make up for a messy qualifying. I made two or three places at the start, but that came undone when I got put on the grass on lap three when I was on the outside. I ended up dropping right through the field because of that. My pace was really good though and very consistent which allowed me to work my back up to eighth. I had a really good battle with Oscar towards the end. It was very fair and a lot of fun. If things hadn’t played out the way they did on lap three I could have been looking at a podium.”