McKenzy Cresswell showcased the pace and potential he possesses in the GB3 Championship in partnership with the BRDC with a very strong final race at Silverstone despite enduring what was an otherwise challenging weekend (May 7/8).
The Chris Dittmann Racing driver kicked off the second event of the 2022 season with a ninth place finish in the opening contest before signing things off on Sunday with a charging drive to sixth - ensuring he banked a solid haul of championship points in the process.
Arriving at the Home of British Motor Racing off the back of an encouraging debut weekend in the series last month, testing on Thursday and Friday proved to be a mixed bag as the new MSV-022 car continued to throw up surprises in its behaviour whilst track conditions changed.
Qualifying on Saturday around the 3.66-mile circuit proved to be ultra-competitive with times tumbling throughout the session. A combination of tyre activation and a mis-timed pit stop resulted in only ninth on the grid for race one.
Starting on the fifth row for the opening 14-lap contest, the Motorsport UK Academy member enjoyed a relatively untroubled drive to finish where he started. Turbulent air ultimately prevented Cresswell from exploiting his pace to make further progress up the order.
Unfortunately race two would see the BRDC Rising Star forced to retire from a points-paying position after his car sustained damage following contact with a rival driver. This outcome was to be doubly disappointing since overnight setup changes had improved the pace of the car; as race three would later illustrate.
Looking to bounce back in the third and final bout, Cresswell - who is backed by Quenched Drinks and supported by Salt Recruitment - underlined his talents by producing a virtuoso performance as he charged into the top six from 12th.
Completing a number of eye-catching moves around the Northamptonshire venue, Cresswell was the fastest driver on track until he found himself behind a slower car in fifth. Despite his best efforts, dirty air and good defensive driving meant sixth was to be where he finished.
McKenzy Cresswell:“It's been somewhat of a challenging weekend but we head home feeling confident that we've taken a step forward and have unlocked the pace that we knew was in the car.
"I was unable to switch on the tyres in qualifying and that basically wrote the story for race one as I was unable to move forward in the dirty air. Race two was what it was; we were pushing hard, the car felt better but I picked up some damage which ended our race.
"Race three was really enjoyable because the car came alive! I dropped a few spots early on but once I got into a groove I was able to pull some good moves and fight back up into the top six.
"Everyone at Chris Dittmann Racing has done a mega job this weekend and I've got to thank them for all their hard work. We're confident we've made some progress with the car and hopefully at Donington Park we will be able to get in amongst it towards the front of the grid."
The 2022 GB3 Championship in partnership with the BRDC season continues in less than two weeks’ time with Donington Park playing host to Rounds 7, 8 and 9 on May 28/29.
Image from Jakob Ebrey Photography.