The second half of the 2016 F3 Cup championship began with a tricky weekend at Oulton Park in Cheshire.
Early morning rain meant Stuart Wiltshire, Tony Bishop and Malcolm Scott opted to head into qualifying with wet tyres on the slowly drying circuit. Despite further rain during the session all three improved late on in the session, with Wiltshire vaulting into the top six. That gain demoted team-mate Bishop to seventh and Scott to 10th.
In the first of the weekend’s two races Bishop slipped back on the opening lap. An early safety car brought him back up to the pack but despite lapping quicker than the cars in front couldn’t find a way through the field. Wiltshire spent the entirety battling on the edge of the top six but too couldn’t force a move and claimed seventh.
Scott’s race ended prematurely, pulling into the pits on lap six struggling with visibilty.
A first-lap pit visit during race two following a spin for Bishop left him playing catch up, eventually rounding out the top 10. But he impressed again with his pace, matching the times of the front-runners in the changing conditions.
Scott proved consistent and spent the race fighting with team-mate Wiltshire, who got the jump on Scott on penultimate lap to steal seventh.
Team principal, Chris Dittmann, said: It was a tough weekend for us. But, we’ve come away with positives – we scored in each race which is good for the Drivers’ Championship. It’s also more points for our Teams’ Championship defence.
Oulton Park is a challenging place, and the changing conditions didn’t make it any easier. It’s slightly disappointing that we weren’t able to score the points our pace deserved, though, but there are still three weekends left. Hopefully we’ll be able to make the most of them and follow-up last season’s excellent results.