A maiden 2021 win for Ben Sharpe was the result of a night of hard work for his Ben Sharpe Racing team ahead of this reverse grid Milltek Civic Cup race from Brands Hatch. In the Production Class it was the Threlfall brothers who secured a 1-2 result.
Martin Dalzell was rugged in holding the lead from his reverse grid pole position, as Ben Sharpe and Dan Thackeray quickly worked their way into contention by the end of the first lap. Sharpe had the slipstream into Paddock Hill as both drivers took advantage of the out of position Dalzell.
Dalzell proved a cork in the bottle for third place stacking up David Buky, Alistair Camp, Matt Luff and George Alp-Williams. As championship protagonists, the quartet were eager to not let Thackeray extend his gap too much and Dalzell was quickly swamped. Having fallen to seventh, it would get worse for the 39-year-old, spinning on the exit of Druids and contacting the barrier. Stopping on the track a safety car was called in order to recover the bright yellow Civic, though it proved unnecessary as Dalzell managed to get it restarting, limping back to the pits to retire having already fallen a lap down.
One of the effects of a safety car was the bunching up of the field, completely eliminating Sharpe and Thackeray’s lead. The British Sim Racing-supported driver would be under threat from Thackeray, the defending Type-R Trophy champion, on the restart, but Sharpe was not easily fazed, holding his own for the two lap sprint that followed and recording the 25 points he desired.
Thackeray would likewise hold on for a respectable second place, which proved even more valuable as championship leader Alistair Camp, having worked his way past Buky for third on the restart, made an uncharacteristic mistake into Paddock Hill, losing the back end and running through the gravel. He would return to the track in sixth, but it would not last, spinning again into the gravel before the flag.
Buky would instead finish third, as fellow title chaser Jamie Tonks would also retire. Instead, it would be Matt Luff, finishing fourth, who took the points lead, helped by the fastest lap point he recorded in the dying stages. Having started tenth, the result was testament to the former-Ginetta driver’s consistency as he aims for a second victory this afternoon.
In fifth Alp-Williams will be hoping for a return to the podium soon as he held off the advances of the Civic FN2 driven by Ben Mills. Front row starter Ryan Bensley was seventh as Phil Wright, Morgan Bailey and Area Motorsport’s Paul McHugh rounded out the top ten.
“I’ve done no testing at all ahead of this weekend and the boys have worked miracles, so this win goes out to them. We had to change the engine yesterday and we don’t run on a big budget so it’s all them, thank you.”
“The car was mega. We’ve got an engine that David Buky lent us and without him, we wouldn’t be on the grid. It’s amazing how great the camaraderie is in this championship, on Saturday we only had one session where the car worked so people have helped me out and that’s what this series is all about, because we all want to beat each other on the track and do it properly.”
In the Production Class it was a second win in as many races for Alfie Threlfall. Leading his older brother Harry home for a family podium. The result will be the perfect Father’s Day gift for the Threlfall family as Peter Dell continued his impressive form from Saturday to round out the podium.
Threlfall the younger, led at the end of the third lap, putting a cup car between himself and brother Harry. It proved essential as Harry lost over six seconds as a result of Darlington’s slightly damaged car. The #20 was recovering having spun at Graham Hill Bend and proved a disruptor to the Production Class. Former-points leader Mervyn Beckett could only manage a sixth place finish in class, being beaten by Simon Welch and and Rhys Lewis.
Production class winner Alfie Threlfall said;
“The race was brilliant. We were just waiting for the rain and when it didn’t come I had much more grip than I expected, so it went as well as I could have hoped. To have my brother in P2 as well is superb. I’m sure it made dad proud.”
Keep up to date with Milltek Civic Cup on our Social Media’s. The three races will be Live Streamed on our Facebook and YouTube channels. Our final race of the weekend will be at 17:10 on Sunday 20th June 2021.
Full Results can be found on TSL Timing.