F2 Sidecar racing team SaS, Giles and Jen Stainton took a well deserved win and third place at Cadwell Park last weekend in the Auto66 Cub race plus third place in the second round of the British F2 Sidecar cup.
Going out for timed practice on new tyres it took a few laps to bed them in and the husband and wife team felt they had hit their stride and were keen to return to the track for qualifying. They were delighted to find they had qualified in 16th place overall for the British championship race and recorded a best lap of 1m 50s which is four seconds faster that their previous personal best time.
A few minutes before the first British Championship got underway the drizzle started and Jen and Giles were relieved they had purchased some intermediate tyres which should be the perfect choice in the damp conditions, but the rain began to fall heavily and the race got underway with standing water on the start and finish straight making the track treacherous.
Jen said: "As we negotiated Park Straight on the second lap we aquaplaned and spun. I was thrown from the outfit and that was our race over. We watched as others spun and encountered difficulties in the worsening conditions. But fortunately no serious damage was done to me or the outfit. I elected to sit out the remaining club races and thanks to Sarah Stokoe for standing in and doing a great job whilst Giles regained a little lost confidence in the wet."
The next day the pair went out for practice on a drying track and put some steady laps in to get back in the swing of things. By the time the first club race came around the track was dry and they were excited to get started. They made a reasonable start but at half race distance the race was red flagged and the teams regrouped on the start line. The race was restarted and Giles and Jen began to creep their way up through the pack. On the last lap they were lying in second place when the leaders crashed through Hall Bends leading to another red flag and much to their surprise and shock they took first place; their first ever top three finish and first ever trophy again achieving a 1.50 best lap.
Next up was the second of the British championship races run over 14 laps of the Lincolnshire Wolds circuit. After settling into their race pace through the first few laps the field became stretched out and the Staintons found themselves running in a lonely midfield position. As a consequence they lost track of positions and laps and just circulated alone enjoying themselves until they caught sight of the last lap flag and went on to completed the last lap with no idea as to where in the field they had finished.
Jen said: "In Parc Ferme we were so excited to find out that we had done a 1m.49s lap and were that busy celebrating together that we didn’t hear our name called out – we had crossed the line as third in the British F2 Cup and were needed on the podium! It was an amazing surprise and we couldn’t stop smiling. We also finished in the top 10 overall in the race which was the icing on the cake.
"Thank you to Sue Hunt for all your help, the advice and reassurance of competitors and friends in the paddock, Auto 66 and FSRA for a fantastic meeting, Sarah Stokoe for a great job and the fantastic marshals and medics. Thanks to our sponsors Interfuse Ltd, T&S Motors, Elite Signs, MMC Agency, Andrew and Vanessa Edwards, Sid Diggins and Helen Pask for all that you do."
pic credit Sid Diggins