Race 2: Hedley splashes to maiden GB3 triumph at Oulton Park

Race 2: Hedley splashes to maiden GB3 triumph at Oulton Park

10 April 2023

Arden VRD’s James Hedley claimed his first GB3 Championship victory at a soaking wet Oulton Park in the second race of the weekend this morning.

Hedley started fourth on the grid, but made a great start to take second on the run to Old Hall on lap one, and then found his way past pole sitter and race one winner Joseph Loake at the end of lap two, and proceeded to pull away.

Behind him, the main battle was for second place, with Rodin Carlin’s Callum Voisin securing the position after passing Loake on lap five.

Voisin closed down rapidly on the Arden VRD car across the final few laps, but ran out of time to catch Hedley, who clinched his first win, just days after announcing his entry for the weekend.

Fortec’s Max Esterson secured his best result of the weekend so far with fourth, from sixth on the grid, while Michael Shin was the lead Hitech Pulse-Eight driver in fifth, having started 14th on the grid.

He headed home teammate Souta Arao, who fell from third on the grid to seventh on the first lap after a slow start, but recovered to sixth.

Rodin Carlin’s Costa Toparis was another to make gains, rising from eighth on the grid to seventh ahead of Douglas Motorsport’s Tymek Kucharczyk, who also gained a position.

Toprais’ teammate John Bennett meanwhile blasted through from 17th on the grid to take ninth, ahead of the second Arden VRD car of Nico Christodoulou, who completed the top-10.

Light rain before the contest necessitated the declaration of a wet race, but the entire field took to the grid with slick Pirelli tyres for the two formation laps. But around the first tour, the rain intensified, catching out more than one driver with at least half the field opting to pit at the end of the first green flag lap for treaded rubber.

While most of the front-runners returned to the grid still on slick tyres, the others had been released from the pit lane, by which time the rain had intensified, and the start delayed, allowing all drivers to change to wet weather tyres on the grid.

When the race finally got underway, all eyes were on Hedley, who surged to second immediately and then set about early race leader Loake, who had also enjoyed a strong start from pole.

It was clear that Hedley was the quicker, and after closing rapidly, found his way past Loake on lap two, and then surged clear. Voisin’s pace towards the end suggested he could have challenged for the position had there been a few more laps, but Hedley was ultimately in command to take his first victory.

The final race of the weekend, the 25-minute reverse grid contest, is due to commence at 13.50.

GB3 Championship, partnered by the BRDC, Oulton Park race two provisional result:
1. James Hedley, Arden VRD, 10 Laps
2. Callum Voisin, Rodin Carlin, +1.528
3. Joseph Loake, JHR Developments, +6.480
4. Max Esterson, Fortec Motorsports, +7.398
5. Michael Shin, Hitech Pulse-Eight, +15.930
6. Souta Arao, Hitech Pulse-Eight, 19.069
7. Costa Toparis, Rodin Carlin, 19.709
8. Tymek Kucharczyk, Douglas Motorsport, +23.020
9. John Bennett, Rodin Carlin, +25.215
10. Nico Christodoulou, Arden VRD, +26.922
11. Matthew Rees, JHR Developments, +27.440
12. Zak Taylor, Chris Dittmann Racing, +29.193
13. Alex Dunne, Hitech Pulse-Eight, +29.494
14. Oliver Stewart, Elite Motorsport, +31.415
15. Arthur Rogeon, Chris Dittmann Racing, +39.409
16. Daniel Mavlyutov, Hillspeed, +39.843
17. Ayato Iwasaki, Elite Motorsport, +40.098
18. Edward Pearson, Fortec Motorsport, +52.174
19. Lucas Staico, Douglas Motorsport, +52.567
20. McKenzy Cresswell, Elite Motorsport, +1m.18.138s
DNF. David Morales, JHR Developments, 7 laps completed
DNF. Shawn Rashid, Douglas Motorsport, 7 laps completed
DNF. Noah Ping, Arden VRD, 4 laps completed
DNS. Jarrod Waberski, Fortec Motorsport
DNS. Gerrard Xie, Hillspeed