The past weekend saw round two of the 2021 Mazda MX-5 Supercup take place at the Silverstone National circuit, with qualifying on Saturday and three twenty minute races squeezed into a very busy Sunday timetable.
In short, there's few good things to draw from the weekend. A stone through the radiator during race two caused an engine failure resulting in a DNF (did not finish), and with only an hour or so before race three it was an impossible ask to get the spare engine fitted in time, resulting in a DNS (did not start) for that race.
It's quite a bitter end to a weekend which saw a lot of hard work from both myself and the team to push me along the steep learning curve of the MX-5 Supercup and get some good results. Unfortunately, that's just the less fun side of motorsport and you have to take the bad with the good.
To try and draw some positives from the weekend- with the help of two days testing at the track in mixed conditions before the race weekend, my pace improved a lot compared to my first race at Croft a month prior.
At Croft, I qualified 24th for race one and 26th for race two. Here at Silverstone, I qualified 19th for race one and 16th for race two which feels like a really positive step forward. This first season in the MX-5 Supercup was always going to be mostly a learning year, but in the super competitive field of drivers in this championship it feels really great to be making these continuous improvements and pushing closer to the front of the pack.
Aside from needing a new engine, it's also good to come away from the weekend with the car otherwise in one piece. With the poor conditions through testing and the races, the same can't be said for many of the other cars on the grid, some sustaining some pretty heavy damage through contact with other cars and track furniture. Silver linings and all that...
All in all a frustrating weekend, but whilst there is still a lot to learn and a lot of areas for me to improve on, the journey to getting faster is (usually) a fun one and I can't wait to get to the next round.
The car will be all ready to go for the next race at Anglesey in just under three weeks time, where I'll be pushing myself to keep making improvements in qualy and race pace, and hopefully convert those improvements to a good result!
Photo credit: Oversteer Photography