Watson takes debut win for Douglas Motorsport
October 10, 2012 by Paul Grogan
Coming from a disappointing weekend at their home circuit in Rockingham just two weeks ago, Douglas Motorsport and their drivers Niall Murray and Andrew Watson were keen to move on and return to the podium in Silverstone. Having lead the Ginetta Junior Teams Championship for most of the season, they now found themselves having just slipped into second by the smallest of margins.
The weekends opening free practice time sheets would show Andrew Watson leading the way showing very impressive pace in all the sessions ahead of team mate and championship front runner Niall Murray. A clearly on form Watson carried this pace into the opening race of the weekend on Saturday afternoon. Coming form sixth on the grid, the Dungannon youngster very quickly worked his way up to second inside three laps. Race leader Charlie Robertson had now opened up a comfortable lead but Watson was clearly not resting on his laurels in second and not only evaporated his lead but passed the championship leader on the penultimate lap of the race to lead the race right to the flag and with it taking his first win of the season. Team mate Niall Murray was having less luck slightly further down the field. A superb run at the start of the race was undone when contact from Sennan Fielding left the championship front runner well down the order. However, Murray has shown sheer determination on more than one occasion this season and worked his way back up to sixth and would later be awarded fifth thanks to a post-race investigation into the incident with Fielding.
Buoyed by his race one win, Andrew Watson was brimming with confidence going into Sunday afternoon’s race two. Once again the pair of Douglas Motorsport drivers got a superb start off the line and by lap four were now running together in second and third with the early advantage going to Watson. By lap six Murray who was very eagar to emulate his team mate and take a race win but more importantly as many championship points as possible was now ahead and chasing down Spanish Rookie driver Pepe Massot. Murray tried a last of the late brakers move coming into Maggotts but the move went against him and allowed Watson back into second where it was now his turn to apply the pressure on the Spanish race leader. However the live ITV4 viewers were about to get the best of the action as on the final lap of the race it was now a five way battle for the lead with Massot, Watson, Murray, Palmer and Fielding all bunched in a pack on the run down to Brooklands. Watson and Massot were side by side with Murray in tow exiting the corner but coming to the line it was Massot who just edged ahead of Watson. Palmer put a very last minute challenge on Murray for third which would spell disaster as the pair slid across the finish line with Palmer initially getting the advantage but a five second penalty for exceeding track limits would had the place back to Murray as a just reward for his hard efforts all weekend.
Speaking after the weekend, Douglas Motorsport team boss Wayne Douglas congratulated Andrew on a perfect performance all weekend, “Andrew has been part of our Driver Development programme since early 2010 and his performance today is testament to the work both he and our team have put in. His pace all weekend has been superb and to reel in championship leader in the way he did in yesterday’s race just shows how good he is. I’m delighted that we’ve had yet another double podium for the team, which puts us back in a commanding lead of the teams championship. Brands Hatch is next up and I really hope we can come out on top in both the team and drivers championship with Niall currently leading the championship by two points before drop scores.”
Douglas Motorsport move onto Brands Hatch for the final weekend of the season in the Ginetta Junior Championship for rounds 19 & 20 on Saturday 20th & Sunday 21st October.