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Round 2: Thruxton - 4th May 2024

Updated: 3 days ago







CAP provides Bank Holiday thrills for thousands at free Thruxton

Our first 993: Stuart Jefcoate joined SP1

A combination of bright sunshine and free entry helped attract thousands of spectators to Thruxton’s Spring Bank Holiday meeting where the CALM All Porsche Trophy (CAP) provided another racing feast on Britain’s fastest circuit.The Thruxton entry list contained some new variations to the usual range of front- and mid-engined Porsches, with the experienced Stuart Jefcoate entering his magnificent white 993, and Phil Brough dusting off his helmet for his first race since 2016 in his 968-engined 924S, another stunningly prepared car. Wil Arif was another CAP debutant, the highly experienced racer sharing an SP2 Boxster with series regular Colin Tester.


Qualifying

Qualifying was the usual frantic 20 minutes, with drivers trying to get clear laps and also ensuring that both drivers qualified in the shared cars that made up a third of the field. There was no surprise at Warren Allen’s pole position, as he continued his “Verstappenesque” domination at the front of the field in his SP1 Cayman on his first ever visit to Thruxton. Second on the grid and raising more than a few eyebrows was the SP3 class 968 driven by Dan Crego who was clearly enjoying this fast flowing circuit and ahead of a gaggle of Boxsters.


Not sure what #23 Stuart Ings is having pointed out to him here in the assembly area

First of these was the SP1 class car driven by James Gunn-Carter, his bewinged car fractionally clear of five very closely matched SP2 Boxsters driven by Colin Tester/Wil Arif, Garry Goodwin, Andrew Duce, Christian Walker and Jamie McHugh. The third SP1 runner was next up, Stuart Jefcoate in the 993.Second in SP3 was the 968 of Tom McHugh, a great result on this punishing circuit as he was racing with a broken rib. Tom was 0.6 sec ahead of the 924S/3.0 of Phil Brough, third in SP3.


Just two SP4 runners appeared at Thruxton, and it was Andy Whiting in his 924S on pole fractionally ahead of Hugh Peart in his 924 2.0. Hugh almost didn’t make it after his car blew the head gasket in morning testing. “Fudge” fitted a new gasket in record time and Hugh just made it out in time for qualifying, but was unsure if the fix would hold, and was taking things cautiously.


Warren Allen went from lights to flag to win overall

Race

It was great to see so many spectators in the grandstands and lining the grass banks, and they were treated to another super spectacle of Porsche racing. Warren Allen leapt from pole position as if he really meant it, and his Cayman was 3.4 seconds ahead of the next car as he completed the first lap. In a masterful drive, he pulled away from the field at around 2 seconds a lap, and was never headed except during the mandatory pit stops, and took a well deserved overall and SP1 class victories. In contrast, fellow front row sitter Dan Crego was swamped at the start by a ferocious pack of Boxsters and completed lap one in 6th.This pack was initially led by the Tester/Arif car, followed by James Gunn-Carter, Christian Walker, and Garry Goodwin. Just behind Crego’s 968 Jamie McHugh and Andrew Duce took up the chase, with Mark Callahan, Stuart Jefcoate in the 993 and James Harvey in his Boxster a couple of seconds further back.


On lap 5 Dan Crego got past Garry Goodwin’s Boxster as he commenced a climb through the field towards his eventual P2 and the SP3 class win. He overtook Christian Walker on lap 7, with the positions reversed on lap 11, but was ahead again next time around. After the pit stops Dan continued his remorseless charge to the front passing the Tester/Arif car on lap 16, James Gunn-Carter 3 laps later and finally the resurgent Christian Walker on lap 20 and finished second overall. He was the clear and deserving winner of the Driver of the Day award.


The SP2 Boxster battle was resolved in favour of Christain Walker, having spent the second half of the race tied in a close battle with the Tester/Arif car, finally prevailing by just 1/10th of a second. Third a few seconds back was Andrew Duce in his 987, having spent much of the race in a close duel with Garry Goodwin’s 986.James Gunn-Carter ran strongly in the early stages, but faded slightly later on to finish 7th overall and a good second in SP1.For much of the second half of the race the leading Boxster battle was further enlivened as Sam Callahan emerged from the pits in the midst of the pack, and although a lap behind, joined in the fun, matching their pace.


Andy Whiting won the SP4 class in his 924S

There were battles all through the field, notably for second in SP3, where Tom McHugh (with broken rib) bested Phil Brough’s 924S by just 2 seconds at the flag with Phil noticeably upping his pace as the race progressed. The SP4 win was taken by Andy Whiting in the 924S. The class was initially led by Hugh Peart’s 2.0 924 after a storming start, and he was comfortably ahead when he suffered a repeat of the head gasket failure that curtailed his practice, and Hugh was the race’s only retirement.


The sun-kissed presentation podium saw trophies for all the class winners, whilst the CAP special award for “Ryan’s Best Mate” was shared between Tom McHugh and Hugh Peart. The award for best turned out car was a really tough decision thanks to the very high standards of presentation on many of the 2024 field, and was won by the narrowest of margins by Phil Brough’s immaculate 924S (3.0).


Report written by John Broadley with photos by Sean Mulcahy.




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