Heartbreak for Vitols as Constantine takes second 2019 victory

April 24, 2019

As the crowds flocked to the spectacular Rallycross venue that is Lydden Hill Race Circuit, they did not have long to wait for the action to start with the Motorsport UK Juniors opening the show.   Ben Sayer was on the pace in Q1 until re-joining the track from the joker section and tussling for track position with round one winner Luke Constantine, damage to the front suspension catapulted him onto the grass where he was stranded for the remainder of the race. 

 

Inside Vitols, Constantine and Sayer 

 

Latvian driver Roberts Vitols gained the advantage to take the lead and see the first chequered flag of the day.  Luke Constantine managed to hold second, closely followed by Patrick O’Donovan and new to the juniors for 2019, Tom Ovenden gave a good performance in front of his home crowd to finish fourth in the opening qualifier.

 

Finding his stride, Vitols took a comfortable win in Q2 ahead of O’Donovan and Luke Constantine completed the top three.  A Swift Family team effort in the paddock got Sayer back out, where he managed to finish fourth quickest.

Vitols dominating drive, winning all three qualifying heats

 

Vitiols once again cruised to victory in Q3 to make it a clean sweep and secure his pole position start in the final.  This time Constantine finished runner-up ahead of O’Donovan, with Ovenden showing consistency with another P4 finish.

 

 The all important final and the young Latvian looked set to steal the show, as he had done all day, he dominated the race when suddenly the crowds began to gasp as the PGM Swift began to slow climbing Hairy Hill, and a Scream of Swifts came soring past him.  Coasting round North Bend Vitols was relegated to sixth position before the Swift kicked back into life and he was back in the race.   

Constantine took the lead, with his mirrors filled by O’Donovan, just waiting for any chance to pass.  Whilst Cousin James Constantine had to fend off Ben Sayer in third for the final lap.  Both held their positions to make it a double Constantine podium.  Ovenden took fifth, ahead of Vitols who despite starting to make back time could not improve place positions, was followed by Championship newcomers Archie Thomas and Alfie Porter.

James Constantine, Luke Constantine & Patrick O'Donovan

3rd James Constantine, winner - Luke Constantine, 2nd Patrick O'Donovan

 

Luke Constantine “It was a tough day for us, Roberts was really fast. He definitely deserved to win – he was doing stunning lap times but with a car problem in the final we just managed to pip him to the finish,”

“I got my head down at the start of the race and stuck to the game plan of keeping pressure on him and not let him get too much clean air. When I saw him pulled over at the side I did lose my focus a little but I managed to hang on. It’s a long run this year and it’s great to get another good result.”

 

With once again a close race across the line with Luke Constantine and O’Donovan, and the dominant drive this weekend by Vitols, the championship hots up already.  Join us for a double header weekend as the TOYO TIRES British Rallycross Championship heads to Pembrey Circuit in Wales on Saturday 22nd June 2019.

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