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Difficult day at Oulton Park for Viking

Difficult day at Oulton Park for Viking

24 April, 2019

2019 Team Viking Round Two Oulton Park

Driver error costs team Viking a top ten finish

Fastest Lap: 1:42.628

Laps: 118

Championship Standings: 14th

An incident-packed four hours of intense racing saw car 110 finish 11th overall at the Oulton Park circuit

 

Despite a favourable start, it wasn't the finish that Team Viking hoped for at Oulton Park, as driver error and contact with another car resulted in damage to car 110 costing the team what could have otherwise been a top five finish.

 

Drivers Nick Nunn and Mark Holme had a promising start to the weekend, as they consistently achieved top five finishes and kept pace with the front runners during testing. All the pieces were falling into place as the team were subsequently given one of the best draws in Qualifying, with a third place start on the grid.

 

Nunn was given the first stint in the car and after his first 40 minutes, brought the car into the pits in fourth.  Thanks to a rapid changeover, Holme was back on the track and moved Team Viking up the field into third.

 

With the team on rails, Holme entered Cascades at 100mph and faced his first significant challenge of the race – a rival car made an ambitious move, and clipped Team Viking’s car. The incident caused minimal structural damage, but resulted in a destroyed splitter and 15 places lost resulting in a drop down the field to P18, the damage was costing the team 0.75s per lap, but the team deemed the repairs unnecessary and took the decision to push ahead.

 

With three hours and 20 minutes of the race remaining, Team Viking were fighting to maintain position. After Holme’s first racing incident, the team dropped down to 18th, but in a testament of skill and performance, he was able to bring the car back to P8.

 

In his second session, Nunn spun under a driver error and dropped down the rankings, but was able to recover and bring the car back into eighth place.

 

Holme took the last stint, but another costly driver error saw Team Viking pushed back into P15. Another racing incident elsewhere in the field saw the safety car called out, bunching up the field to Team Viking’s advantage.

 

With 10 minutes of the four-hour race remaining, there was less than one minute’s margin between first place and 15th. Holme was on form, and with four laps remaining another car clipped the driver and some of the bodywork folded under the car. The damage slowed the car significantly, pushing Team Viking further down the field again. Holme remained steadfast and crossed the chequered flag in 11th.

 

“That was the hardest race we’ve had in five years of competing,” said Holme as he climbed out the car. “We probably deserved 11th overall, but without the driver errors, we could have brought it in P5 or higher.”

 

Next up for Team Viking is a five-hour race at the world famous Croft Circuit in Darlington. It will not only be an inaugural race for Nunn and Holme at the notoriously challenging circuit, but will also mark a long-awaited return for the  series. The race is set to take place on Saturday 18 May.

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