Sharp denied at Brands Hatch by Mechanical Issue

 
Tom Sharp at Brands Hatch
Tom being interviewed
Camberley’s Tom Sharp went into the last race meeting on the Brands hatch Grand Prix circuit full of confidence. His IDL Racing team had prepared his Ginetta GT sports car well so Sharp was quickest in both Friday wet free practice sessions, which boded well for qualifying.
The Ginetta GT Supercup qualifying was held late morning on Saturday in drying conditions, which made for tricky driving conditions. After a strong qualifying session Sharp lined up in 3rd place only 0.77 sec behind the pole position.
The first race of the weekend took place on Saturday afternoon in dry conditions, but disaster struck before sharp was able to get back to the grid on the green flag lap. A driveshaft had broken and even though he managed to get back to the pits, he was unable to take part in the race. A race that he was confident he could win.
As Sharp commented on Saturday night “I can honestly say we couldn’t have done anything differently. The drive shafts were changed only two race meetings ago and are designed to last for a minimum of a season. In a way weird way I consider myself lucky that it failed on the warm up lap and not at the start as it would have caused a massive start line incident like the one we saw at Knockhill.
This left Sharp with a mountain to climb as he would have to start from the back of the grid for race 2.
TSharp-G55-BHGP-Oct12-03
Tom takes the lead in Race 3
Race two took place on Sunday lunchtime in wet and rainy conditions, and as the red lights went out Sharp made a strong start, and by the end of the 2nd lap was up to 6thplace and battling with the front runners. Over the next few laps he managed to find his way past competitors, but was unable to find his way past a slow Breeze, so finished in 4th place. This left him 15 points behind the championship leader with one race to go.
For the final race of the season Sharp lined up in 3rd place on the grid and after a quick start was quickly in the lead in the very wet and poor conditions. He continued to extend his lead to 6 seconds at the chequered flag, but key championship Rival Breeze finished in 3rd place and so took the championship by the narrow margin of 5 points.
As Sharp summed up “I guess I feel a pretty hard done by after being much quicker than the rest of the field all weekend, in fact in practice at one point I was 2 seconds up on the competition and if it hadn’t have gone wrong in the first race it would have been 3 wins and a championship but sometimes these things happen.”
Sharp is reviewing his plans for 2013 and is looking for “something quicker” to compete in.

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