|Like cream, talent always rises to the top and after his 2009 season was blighted by a blood injury, James Greenway bounced back with a superb victory at the Rotax Winter Cup at Campillos (13/14 February). |
However, the week had not begun smoothly for James and the Strawberry Racing team, as they worked hard to cope with adverse weather conditions and technical problems. Having largely overcome them, James then made steady progress through timed qualifying and the heats to keep in touching distance of the initial pace-setters. 7th place in the pre-final gave him a good grid position for the final.
Taking just a handful of laps to work his way up to 2nd place, Greenway patiently waited for the opening he needed. It came on the penultimate tour and having seized the initiative, he brought his Tony Kart home nearly three seconds clear of the chasing pack.
Strawberry Team Manager, Warwick Ringham said: “After a very difficult week, where all our drivers experienced ups and downs, I was over the moon for James. It’s been a hard few years for him and he’s come close to a big win several times before. Now he’s got one under his belt, I’m sure it will give him the confidence to challenge for all the major honours in 2010.”
James’ team-mate and newcomer to the squad, Tom Fawcett joined him on the podium. As Warwick explains, “Due to exam commitments before the event, Tom had limited testing time. So, in his first race with us, he preformed exceptionally well. To be quickest in timed practice, third in the final and post the fastest lap is a great start to his season. I am sure he will have a great year with Strawberry, as he is a fantastic driver.”
Fellow recent signing, Dutch star Mats van den Brand qualified third fastest overall in timed practice and took a heat win but suffered from bad luck in the heats. From a lowly grid position in the pre-final, Mats recovered from another opening lap crash to carve his way from the back of the field to eighth place - the only non-English driver in the top twelve. Warwick observed: “Mats is already fitting in really well with the team. He’s really enthusiastic and wants to learn.”
Although he was unable to join his colleagues in the main final, Barrie Pullinger gave his boss plenty to be positive about. “Barrie’s learning and improving all the time. He secured his first top ten group qualification and a sixth-place finish in his first heat. He has come on so much in the last few months. If he can keep up the hard work and commitment he has shown over that time, he will only continue to get better.”
Strawberry’s sole representative in the junior category, Henry Hunter was making his European debut. After initially losing ground at the start of the main final, he managed to take sixth place and set the fastest lap.
“Henry will have a good year in 2010. He’s keen to learn and is a great racer. We still have a few things to iron out but they will be sorted by the time we arrive at Salbris (24-28 March).”
The Strawberry Racing team uses the Tony Kart Racer EVR chassis, OTK products and Ogden Motorsport-tuned engines. For more information, or to book a test drive, go to www.strawberryracing.co.uk. Alternatively, call 0114 269 6215/0114 288 9933.