For only the second time ever the UK&I Skip Barber League lined-up at their home circuit of Donington Park. Sebastian Job sat on pole position for the 19 lap race of the National layout after posting a time of 1:17.6 which was just over six hundredths faster than Wojciech Swirydowicz and Stuart Adcock in second and third.
The opening laps were tame in nature, as usual, as the sim-racers sized each other up and began making strategic decisions about where they might attempt their overtaking moves. At the front, Swirydowicz was the first to fall with Adcock making a move around the outside of Redgate. With the inside line for Craner he moved ahead of Swirydowicz heading into the Old Hairpin.
Amazingly the top three remained unchanged until just about the halfway point of the race when, on Lap Ten, Adcock tried a move around the outside of Job at McLean’s. Unfortunately for Adcock the result was the opposite of his intended effect as Job held the position and Swirydowicz got a run on Adcock through Coppice, moving him back into second place on the run down to the final corners.
Swirydowicz carried his momentum well and was even able to challenge Job heading into Redgate on Lap 11, while Adcock used the slipstream to good effect and the pair of them swarmed Job on either side. Job used all of his skill and talent though and managed to hold off both sim-racers by the time they hit the Old Hairpin.
Swirydowicz continued his attack on Job through Starkey’s Bridge but ultimately lost-out to Adcock once again, this time at McLean’s. After Coppice, Swirydowicz pulled to the right side of the track and slowed significantly — either as the result of a corner cut penalty or a technical issue — losing him places to Tom Ward, Simon Povey, and also Marc Mercer.
Now in third position, Ward saw an opportunity to grab second place with the inside line for Redgate and was now just a car length or two from the top spot.
At the end of Lap 13 and in fifth position, Mercer had a brilliant line through the final chicane and carried much more speed than the cars ahead of him. Swirydowicz followed suit and the pair of them went four-wide with Ward and Povey down towards Redgate with Mercer taking second place and Swirydowicz usurping fourth.
Adcock came off worse for wear in the confusion and dropped to sixth behind Povey, or rather nearly behind Povey. Contact between the two of them at the entrance to the Old Hairpin sent Povey spinning and Adcock into the gravel, removing them both from contention.
At the start of Lap 15 Ward was piling on the pressure for Mercer’s second place but had the same result as Adcock previously, and ended-up losing out to Swirydowicz instead. That was only temporary however as Swirydowicz made a mistake at the final chicane which dropped him behind Ward and also David Burnett.
Swirydowicz returned the favor to Burnett on the penultimate lap around the outside at Starkey’s Bridge, giving him the inside line for McLean’s which put him back into fourth place and even gave him a run on Ward. When Ward went deep at Coppice Swirydowicz was in perfect position to capitalize and took third with just over a lap remaining. At this point Job had built a considerable gap to the battling sim-racers behind him.
With Ward still in arm’s reach, Swirydowicz pushed hard as the white flag came out, and began closing the gap in the first half of the lap. He got a bit too close at Coppice, however, as he made contact with Mercer and was sent into a slide. He caught the slide but came under attack from Ward heading into the final chicane, narrowly holding on to his third place position by 0.031 seconds in the checkered flag.
After just under 25 minutes Job had an almost five second gap to Mercer in second while third through fifth were separated by just over half a second. Meanwhile, Adcock hung on to sixth, harassed by Marcus Hamilton all the while. In the championship Job maintains his lead at the top of the standings with a now 30 point gap to Ward while Mercer moves into third a further 26 points behind Ward. Burnett was the week’s big winner though with his fifth place finish which puts him in P27 after just two race starts.