Porsche Season Finale to See Titles Settled and Champions Crowned
Brands Hatch on Sunday September 2nd will see the culmination of an exciting season of Petro-Canada Lubricants Porsche Club Championship with Pirelli racing, with class champions to be confirmed and the overall champion to be crowned. While the leaders in classes one and two will be battling for the overall title, drivers in class three – the Restoracing Competiton Boxsters who have joined the field at two previous meetings – will have their own two races at Brands Hatch to decide their champion.
Clear favourites for the overall title are the leaders of each of the first two classes, Mark Sumpter and Jonathan Evans. Sumpter leads his rival by just one point after 12 races, but at Brands Hatch dropped scores will come into play as each driver can only count 12 of the 14 races towards his final points tally. That hands former champion Sumpter a slight advantage as he has 12 less points to drop, but the margins are tight and both know that two wins at Brands Hatch will be the surest route to staying in contention.
Sumpter has won seven times so far in class one, but has not had it all his own way, the similar 996 C2 of Mark McAleer pushing him hard in recent races and taking a win at Silverstone last time out. A troubled start to the season has kept reigning champion McAleer out the title chase, so closest to Sumpter in the class points have been Cayman S duo Simon Clark and Chris Dyer, and their battle for second in class – and possibly the first outright race win for a Cayman - will be worth watching.
New for 2018 was the introduction of the Porsche 997 CS2 to the series, the car the most powerful in the series but also the heaviest with the different models balanced in class by power to weight ratio. Double former champion Pete Morris gave the car its first race win at Silverstone in June, while Michael Price has been right there in the races in his distinctively liveried 997.
Evans has been a constant front-runner in class two in his Boxster S, his rivals only benefitting when he has hit problems, and is guaranteed the class title. Steve Freeman sits second in the points, a fine performance in his first season of racing, taking a win at Donington Park in July, but is just two points clear of fellow Boxster racer Andrew Muggeridge and both will be keen to claim second in the final standings.
The class three Boxsters, cars restored and prepared for racing by official Porsche Centres, joined the field at Brands Hatch and Silverstone earlier in the season, but for the finale will have their own races. Ben McLaughlin has been the runaway winner in all four races to date, but has been adjudged too experienced to score points in a category aimed at racing novices, though provides a useful benchmark of the performance possibilities of the immaculately turned out Boxsters.
Josh Morris in the Porsche Centre Bolton heads the class going into the final two races, points from all six eligible races counting, having taken maximum scores in two races so far, but with potentially over 70-points up for grabs for drivers cannot be certain of the title. Will Heslop sits 28-points back in his pink Boxster, the class sporting car liveries from Porsche’s racing history or ones inspired by those colour schemes, and would be right there if he had not hit problems in race two at Brands Hatch in May.
Oliver Coles representing Porsche Centre Swindon sits just one point behind Heslop, and with two other cars within another four points, the Boxster only class should be well-worth watching – the drivers relishing the chance to have their own race and for the first time take the chequer flag heading the field.