Egginton?s debut ends in anguish
Chris Egginton was looking forward to his debut race in the 2003 Michelin Porsche Club event at Silverstone this weekend [11 May], but after an exceptional qualifying session his race was brought to an abrupt stop on the first lap.
With only a couple of test days in his Porsche 968 CS, plus running 90 kilos over weight and some significant development work still to do, Chris managed to qualify an outstanding 4th on the grid.
?I expected Chris to give it everything in qualifying?, said Gordon Wardle, team manger ?but I didn?t expect him to manage the second row of the grid first time out. Although Tony Brown is on fantastic form this weekend with a 1 second lead over the rest of the pack in qualifying, there?s only 1 second separating the next 7 cars. I?m impressed that Chris was on the pace with so much development still to be done?.
The race saw a fantastic line up of 27 cars on the grid, but the first lap was red flagged with a three car ?scrap heap? at Becketts.
Richard Harrison, starting from 12th in his 911 Carrera was apparently run wide onto the grass through Maggots Curve, leaving him on a collision course with the pack of cars ahead. Unable to stop the impending accident Harrison?s car dramatically took out Chris Egginton?s 968 and Richard Bayston in his 944 S2 as they went through Becketts Corner.
All three drivers amazingly escaped serious injury, leaving three cars destroyed in the gravel. Chris required an X-ray as his foot took a huge impact in the incident, the outcome of which is thankfully just bruising and swelling.
?All the drivers involved are fortunate to have escaped with just bumps and bruises? said Gordon Wardle, ?but I can?t believe the rotten luck Chris has had today; this is his first race in the 968 after he had a big testing accident back in February?.
Chris Egginton comments today [13 May]: ?The 968 was awesome in Club qualifying. I improved my time again in the Porsche Open qualifying and was doing regular low .67?s. I think the car had the potential to finish the Club race in the top three.
?I had an average start and was too defensive through the first corner; I then kept to the right through Becketts and just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time when Harrison came straight across the track. It all happened so quickly, next thing I knew I was in the gravel.
?I?m fit and well, it was just a racing accident and I bear no grudges?.
As far as the Championships concerned, Chris said: ?We?ll be back and on the pace, this is just a set back. The settings Gordon put on the car got us on the pace straight away and I know he has more improvements planned?.