Will Jenkins showcased his overtaking talent in abundance at Knockhill this past weekend (14/15 August), with some tremendous charges through the field in the latest rounds of the Michelin Ginetta Junior Championship.
Returning to Knockhill with fond memories of a rookie class podium finish there last season, his first piece of Ginetta silverware, Jenkins travelled to Scotland early to take advantage of a couple of additional test days ahead of the race meeting’s usual Friday free practice sessions.
Getting more than 120 laps under his belt across dry and wet conditions, the Staffordshire racer was ready to hit the ground running in qualifying on Saturday. Unfortunately it didn’t go his way though, with a red flag stoppage as he prepared to complete his best lap costing him dear.
Starting 15th for the opening race, Jenkins produced a tremendous charge through the field in his Elite Motorsport Ginetta G40. Seizing every opportunity presented to him, he pulled off some eye-catching overtaking moves en-route to a brilliant fifth place at the chequered flag.
The Knockhill weekend was busier than normal for Jenkins, with the postponed race from Oulton Park a fortnight ago being added to the timetable on Saturday evening. Starting that one 10th, he once again impressed in the competitive midfield battles to climb to fifth at the finish.
With two strong points finishes under his belt, the Hopkins Motorsport, Asset Alliance Group, Corroconsult and Digraph backed driver was confident of more on Sunday. Unfortunately in race three, after fighting his way into the top six, he was spun around into the gravel.
Whilst able to get back on track, it resulted in a finish of 22nd. Starting there for race four, the Stone based driver experienced further disappointment as after superbly working his way into the battle for the top ten, he was unable to avoid a spinning car ahead of him and contact led to a retirement.
The tough Sunday means the 16 year old now lies fifth in the Michelin Ginetta Junior Championship points standings ahead of the next rounds at Thruxton in two weeks’ time (28/29 August).
Will Jenkins: “It just never really went our way this weekend. We knew the car had good pace from testing and free practice, but luck was against us with the timing of the red flag in qualifying, and that ultimately put me on the back foot for the races.
“Saturday’s double header went as well as I could have hoped, with some good points from a couple of fifth place finishes. Sunday was unfortunately a day to forget though, as on both occasions I was progressing well before being taken out in incidents outside of my control.
“We’ve lost some ground in the championship battle after this weekend, but we’re only just past the halfway mark of the season and there’s still 12 races to come. We head back to Thruxton next aiming to build on a strong start to the season there back in May.”
Image from Jakob Ebrey Photography.