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HARPER HEADS TRICKY PORSCHE CARRERA CUP GB FRIDAY PRACTICE AT BRANDS HATCH

Newly crowned Porsche Carrera Cup GB champion – 18-year-old Porsche GB 2018 / 2019 Junior Dan Harper (JTR) – topped Friday Practice as the championship’s final weekend got underway in Kent. Despite slippery weather conditions, Porsche GB Junior Harper mastered the Brands Hatch Grand Prix circuit to end the day ranked ahead of Josh Webster (Team Parker Racing) and returnee Ross Wylie (IN2 Racing) in the Pro category standings. The morning Practice session was punctuated by red flag periods as the drivers got to grips with difficult wet conditions, the afternoon’s session was a similar story with a mixture of wet and dry weather running.

Pro-Am category driver Adam Hatfield (Valluga) took advantage of the mixed conditions to end Friday fastest in category, local driver Esmee Hawkey (GT Marques), championship leader Karl Leonard (Team Parker Racing) and Sam Brabham (Team Connect It) were all closely matched. Despite an off late into the day’s second session, Adam Knight (JTR) emerged as the fastest Am category driver, Justin Sherwood (Team Parker Racing) recorded the second fastest time in category, with Lucky Khera (Team Parker Racing) third.

Though the Pro and Pro-Am category championships were decided at Silverstone, the weekend ahead will see the Pro-Am category championship, Team championship and Rookie championship all finalised. The full 2.4-mile Brands Hatch Grand Prix circuit is challenging in the dry, with mixed weather forecast for the remainder of the weekend, tomorrow’s qualifying session could play a crucial role in resolving the remaining championship battles.

Session 1 – 11:35 to 12:20
Track temperature: 15.0 degrees

The first drivers taking to the wet track in each category were Seb Perez (Amigos Redline Racing) – Pro, Adam Hatfield (Valluga) – Pro-Am, and Lee Frost (Team Parker Racing) – Am
In wet and slippery conditions the drivers began to build speed as they assessed the available grip
Five minutes into the session the red flag was flown to enable the recovery of Pro-Am driver Sam Brabham (Team Connect It) from the gravel trap at Clearways
The session restarted following a 10 minute stoppage but was red flagged again six minutes later following an off for Jamie Orton (JTR)
With 18 minutes of the session remaining the green flag was flown
Josh Webster (Team Parker Racing) set the pace at the top of the timesheet with 18-year-old Porsche GB 2018 / 2019 Junior Dan Harper (JTR) and Tio Ellinas (Redline Racing) behind
In Pro-Am Jack McCarthy (Redline Racing) led Esmee Hawkey (GT Marques) from Hatfield
At the top of the Am category times Justin Sherwood (Team Parker Racing) led Lucky Khera (Team Parker Racing) from Adam Knight (JTR)
Another red flag period followed six minutes after the last following an off by Am driver Fraser Robertson (Redline Racing) in the first sector – the session went green again with just under eight minutes remaining
Lewis Plato (Motorbase Performance) improved to P3, making the order at the top; Webster, Plato, Ellinas
In the closing stages of the session Peter-Kyle Henney (IN2 Racing) improved to P2 in Am
With just one minute of FP1 remaining a final red flag was shown due to Webster and McCarthy being off the circuit – this was immediately followed by the chequered flag to end the session
Pro: Webster, Plato (+0.252), Ellinas (+0.672)
Pro-Am: McCarthy, Hawkey (+0.489), Leonard (+1.771)
Am: Sherwood, Kyle-Henney (+1.447), Khera (+2.105)

Session 2 – 13:30 to 14:10
Track temperature: 15.6 degrees

In damp conditions the first drivers taking to the track in each category were George Gamble (Amigos Redline Racing) – Pro, Jack McCarthy (Redline Racing) – Pro-Am, and Lee Frost (Team Parker Racing) – Am
Early pacesetters in each category were Tio Ellinas (Redline Racing) – Pro, Esmee Hawkey (GT Marques) – Pro-Am, and Peter Kyle-Henney (IN2 Racing) – Am
With rain fall getting heavier, the Pro order was Ellinas, Josh Webster (Team Parker Racing) and George Gamble (Amigos Redline Racing)
In Pro-Am Hawkey led Karl Leonard (Team Parker Racing) from McCarthy, in Am Kyle-Henney led Rookie Adam Knight (JTR) from Justin Sherwood (Team Parker Racing)
With the track ready for slick tyres 18-year-old Porsche GB 2018 / 2019 Junior Dan Harper (JTR) set a benchmark time – 1:37.088
Following an incident for Knight which saw him leave the circuit at the first turn –, making contact with the barriers – the red flag came out
The green flag was flown with under eight minutes remaining on the clock, only a handful of drivers returned to the track
Pro: Harper, Webster (+0.869), Wylie (+1.381)
Pro-Am: Hatfield, Hawkey (+2.457), Leonard (+2.509)
Am: Knight, Sherwood (+2.177), Khera (+3.389)

Qualifying for round fifteen will take place on Saturday 12 October between 13:20 and 13:50, with drivers fighting for the two points awarded in 2019 for the fastest time posted in each category over the course of the session.

Source. Porsche

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