Dorset racer Josh Malin stormed to a sensational double victory in the second round of the 2020 Protyre Motorsport Ginetta GT5 Challenge season, putting in a perfect performance in support of British Touring Car Championship at Oulton Park (22/23 August).
Malin returned to Cheshire in high spirits having taken a race win during the season opener at the same circuit three weeks’ prior. This time around he was racing on a different track layout though, with the BTCC competing on the short Island configuration.
That didn’t faze the Ferndown based driver though and he made an immediate statement of intent as he topped the timesheets in free practice on Friday. That momentum carried into Saturday as he stormed to a superb double pole position in qualifying.
From the front of the grid, Malin put in a brilliant performance in the opening race behind the wheel of his Richardson Racing Ginetta G40. Leading the field through the first few laps, he soon found himself under pressure from a group of cars behind.
Malin produced a faultless defensive display to soak up the pressure and stay out front throughout the race. A crucial late break ensured a comfortable run to the chequered flag to complete a brilliant race victory in his The Car Guys.TV and Digital Motorsports backed Ginetta.
Race two the next day saw torrential rain greet Malin as he lined up on pole position in front of the live ITV4 television cameras. The treacherous conditions didn’t faze him though as he launched off the line into the race lead heading through Old Hall for the first time.
Malin soon found himself under immense pressure from behind by rival Jonny Wilkinson, with the duo running nose to tail for a number of laps. The lead switched hands briefly on the penultimate tour, but Malin forced him into a mistake to regain the advantage.
A superb conclusion saw him hammer in the fastest lap of the race last time around to confirm his fourth career victory in the GT5 Challenge and complete a perfect weekend. The double win means Malin has moved up to third in the championship standings.
Josh Malin:"What an absolutely amazing weekend. I couldn’t be happier. After a rollercoaster season opener, I came here determined to take a double win and fight back in the championship, so it was mission accomplished.
“Richardson Racing gave me a faultless car whatever the conditions and that gave me so much confidence through free practice and qualifying. The opening race was tricky, I got some contact from behind which gave us a little bit of damage and I had so much pressure from behind.
“We got the win though, and then repeated it in race two. That was by far the best race of my career so far, as it was my first time in proper wet conditions in the car and I had to work so hard to keep Jonny [Wilkinson] at bay, he’s a very talented driver.
“I’m absolutely over the moon and it’s a huge shot of confidence heading to Knockhill next weekend. I have to say a massive thank you to my sponsors The Car Guys.TV and Digital Motorsports, the team and my family for making it possible for me to do what I love.”
There’s no rest for Malin and the Richardson Racing team, as they head straight North to Knockhill in Scotland for the next rounds of the 2020 season (29/30 August).