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Inkster on the pace for Challenge Cup opener

Inkster on the pace for Challenge Cup opener

Former rally star turned circuit racer Glenn Inkster has had a successful opening round of the V8 Challenge Cup held at Hampton Downs raceway over the weekend.

A switch of teams over the off season paid dividends for Inkster who immediately topped the time sheets in Friday’s opening practise session by almost half a second, which was backed up by another fastest time in the second session, this time more than six tenths of a second ahead.

Saturday saw qualifying and again Inkster was on top as he sliced almost another second off his best practise time to take his first career pole position, again a comfortable margin ahead of the chasing pack.

Starting from the front, Inkster struggled early on with a lack of tyre temperature and a steadily worsening gearbox problem which unfortunately saw him slip back down to fourth place. Although his pace was strong, he was unable to improve on the place and crossed the line in fourth.

Race two saw Inkster again off the front row as the top five positions were reversed and after leading through the opening few corners, was passed by race pace-setter Kevin Williams before conceding another place to cross the line in third place.

Starting third on the grid for the third and final 12-lap race, Inkster maintained his spot but dropped a bit of time early in the race as the gearbox continued to pop out of second gear. As the laps counted down, Inkster was setting a pace as quick as the leading duo, but the damage was done and although the leaders weren’t pulling away, the gap wasn’t getting much smaller either. In the end another third place secured third for the round and a solid haul of points from the opening round of the series.

“I’m really, really happy to have been quickest and practise and get pole position, which shows we have good speed in the car. We have a couple of things to work on in the races and the gearbox problem certainly didn’t help, but to come away with a solid haul of points from the opening round is always encouraging,” said Inkster.

The team now face a break before the second round of the Series at the new layout of Pukekohe Park Raceway.

ENDS

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