McKenzy Cresswell produced a superb drive to claim a first podium of the season this past weekend (July 22-24) as the GB3 Championship in partnership with the BRDC took centre stage at the world-famous Spa Francorchamps.
On what proved to be a frenetic fifth event of the year for the single-seater series, the Chris Dittmann Racing driver showed great pace in Belgium as he recorded his best finish to-date; third place in race two. Having spent plenty of time learning the track on the simulator prior to the weekend, the Motorsport UK Academy and BRDC Rising Star driver spent much of Friday’s three practice sessions getting himself and the car dialled into the 4.35-mile track. Come qualifying later that afternoon, Cresswell was bang on the pace and set a best time of 2:16.409 to clinch sixth on the grid for the opening contest. Unfortunately, the Surrey racer’s chances of progressing from the third row in Saturday’s first race were dealt an early blow when he was forced to pit for a new front wing following contact after a safety-car restart, which dropped him out of contention. As the sun set in the Ardennes, race two saw Cresswell - who is sponsored by Quenched Drinks and supported by Salt Recruitment - bounce back in style with a masterful drive which ultimately led him to a rostrum finish. Starting sixth, the 16-year-old was in the thick of the action during the opening exchanges, tumbling down to as low as ninth before staging a superlative fightback drive back up the order. Getting his head down, the Formula to Perform athlete was soon the one to watch as he charged forward to fourth, completing a number of eye-catching moves at the end of the Kemmel Straight and into Les Combes. Fourth would become third after the chequered flag as a time penalty for a rival saw Cresswell promoted onto the podium. Cresswell closed out the weekend in 20th in what was a heavily disrupted reverse grid race on Sunday morning, where the finishing positions were eventually allocated based on those on the completion of lap one. McKenzy Cresswell: “I’m really happy to have scored my first podium of the season - it has been a long time coming! As soon as I signed this deal Spa was the one event I was really looking forward to so to have come here and picked up our first piece of silverware is absolutely mega. “The results in race one and race three weren’t anything to shout about but what was important this weekend was that we have made some big steps forward; both with the car and my driving. A massive amount of credit has to go to the whole team cause they’ve worked super hard these last few weeks. “We’ve got a quick turnaround now as we’re back in action at Silverstone next weekend but that’s absolutely fine. We’ve got momentum on our side and I’m confident we can fight for more top results in a few days time.” Rounds 16, 17 & 18 of the 2022 GB3 Championship in partnership with the BRDC takes place around the Silverstone Grand Prix circuit this coming weekend (July 30/31).
Image from Jakob Ebrey Photography.