Bruce Winfield took the first win of the Thruxton weekend, taking the lead of the Milltek Civic Cup race into the complex on the opening lap and never looking back. Breaking away from the field, Winfield regains the championship lead as misfortune hit polesitter (and fellow rival) Morgan Bailey.
Unsurprisingly, it would be the championship leaders of Winfield and Bailey who broke away even before the first braking zone. After gaining the upper hand, the #37 of Bruce Winfield was quick to run away, breaking the tow before the end of the lap.
Bailey would be less fortunate, dropping places to his rivals on the opening lap as the car struggled with top speed pace, eventually promoting Paul Taylor and Alistair Camp, to the podium positions.
Winfield’s raw speed was not to be sniffed at, as Taylor continued to fall away from the leader. Despite Thruxton’s great slipstreaming ability, the chasers could not close the gap to Winfield, as the battling duo simply held each other up.
Taylor had lost his early pace, as Camp and then Max Lewis pressured the #195. Lewis had been half-spun on the opening lap, recovering quickly and used the ensuing scrap to take second place as Taylor was dropped to fourth on the run into the chicane.
The only chink in Winfield unfailing armour would lose be on the final lap when he lost 3 seconds to those behind, finishing just 1.273 seconds ahead of Lewis, who held his position despite Camp’s late rebound. Taylor crossed the line fourth as fifth went to George Alp-Williams. Starting ninth, Alp-Williams had gained four places from his starting position, more than any other driver, earning him the Forever Forward award.
Sixth place David Buky repaid the efforts of his team to get the engine changed in time for Sunday running, gaining two places from his starting position, pressuring Alp-Williams throughout. Meanwhile Bradley Lane finished seventh to set himself up for a second row start in race two.
Further back, battles for the top ten saw Jamie Tonks run wide at the chicane on lap 7, skimming the barrier and avoiding Ryan Bensley. Despite his slight aesthetic damage, it would not affect his overall pace, setting the fastest lap and crossing the line in eighth.
Bensley had been on course for a strong finish, but late drama saw him crawl across the line, dropping 3 places on the closing lap. If he can get his car in working order for race two, he’ll start second alongside rookie Kevin O’Connor. Samuel Barrett and Morgan Bailey completed the finishers.
Race two is at 17:05 UK Time.