Kildare teenager makes competitive return to racing
April 29, 2014 by Fergus Brennan
Kildare teenager Simon Quinn made a return to motorsport competition at Donington Park in England last weekend (April 26th & 27th), after a four year lay-off, and impressed with his speed on his circuit racing début.
Racing in the UK Mini Challenge, Quinn had a number of obstacles to overcome not least of all being qualifying, as his former sport of Rallycross did not include qualifying sessions. Adding to Quinn’s challenges were a lack of knowledge of the Donington Park circuit, much longer races and bigger grids than he had previously encountered.
Following a hectic schedule made up of a single qualifying session and three races the Naas youngster left Donington satisfied with his own performance, having impressed his new team and his competitors. Most impressive of all was his qualifying result where he proved his speed with second fastest time and a front row start for race 1.
Racing would prove more difficult to master than qualifying, but Sixth place in race one, following a hectic race where he dropped to fourteenth place at one stage, made for a stronger than expected début. Starting from Sixth in race two Quinn made a stronger start and after a race long battle improved his finishing position to fourth. Through both races Simon continued to show his speed with fourth fastest lap in race one and third fastest in race two.
Starting fourth in Sunday’s final race the impressive rookie was faced with another new challenge as he now had to learn about racing in the wet. Having started strongly, a couple of off track excursions dropped Simon down the field but just as he was starting to fight back the race was stopped due to an incident. With the result declared when the red flags flew, the newcomer had to settle for eleventh but once again impressed with his speed setting fourth fastest race lap.
Following the opening weekend of his racing return Quinn sits seventh in the highly competitive Mini Cooper Racing series and is already looking forward to his next event at Brands Hatch on May 10th & 11th. The Mini Challenge is hopefully just the start of a more permanent return to racing for this talented driver who hopes to build a career in Saloon and Touring Car racing over the coming years. To follow Simon Quinn’s racing exploits see the Simon Quinn Racing facebook page.