Abbie overcomes problems to score GT cup points at the Rock

Abbie Focused before the race (photo by Marc Waller)

Abbie Focused before the race (photo by Marc Waller)Abbie Eaton headed for Rockingham recently to drive her Geoff Steel Racing BMW M3 GTR in the GT Cup.


She shares the car with Michael Symons who this time was doing the single 50 minute race on Saturday with Abbie taking over for the two twenty five minute races on Sunday. The points both drivers scored would be added to their overall team total.

Both drivers took the car out in testing on Friday and then first practice before Michael took over for the Saturday qualifying session and his 50 minute race.

Michael took fifth in class on the grid for the race and then drove a consistent race, moving up to fourth in class at the pit stops but he then slipped back down to fifth in the closing stages.

Now it was Abbie’s turn to take over the car on Sunday. Qualifying started off dry and then became wet. Abbie had set a great lap early on and looked set for a great starting position with the bad weather arriving. But towards the end of the session the rain stopped and the track dried rapidly. The team had thought the track wouldn’t be quick again and had held Abbie in the pits but as the session came to an end the times tumbled. Abbie was left fourth in class and twelfth overall, still a good result but not the one Abbie was hoping for.

“That was a rubbish qualifying for me due to numerous factors out of my control.” She continued

“The only way is forward in the race.”

Abbies team mante Michael Symons scored points in his race in the car (photo by Marc Waller) Abbie fought rain and understeer in race two her first of the weekend (photo by Marc Waller) Abbie is fearless around Rockingham's banking (photo by Marc Waller) Abbie was quick when the car worked (photo by Marc Waller) Abbie flew in race 3 before her brake problems  (photo by Marc Waller) Abbie picks up another trophy despite having car trouble (photo by Marc Waller)

As the first race got underway she got a strong start and was racing with the second placed car in class. However she found her car had terrible understeer, the last thing you want on a circuit with as many corners as Rockingham. It was preventing her taking the fight to the cars ahead of her in her class. Then towards the end of the race, it started to rain. There wasn’t enough time for a pitstop and so she completed the race on slicks with her car handling skill the only thing stopping her from spinning off. Under the circumstances third in class and seventh overall was a great result but Abbie was understandably frustrated at not being able to push the car to the maximum.

The team worked on the set up for the third and final race of the weekend and Abbie was ready to go once more. She got another strong start and was soon up to second in class and battling for class the lead which she managed to take. Things were looking strong but after a few laps she began having intermittent problems with the brakes meaning it was a lucky dip whether the car would slow or not and going into the Deene they didn’t resulting in her running wide and dropping to fourth in class. She fought back but with the brakes still giving her intermittent problems and the race only lasting 25 minutes in total there just wasn’t any way to regain her lost positions and she crossed the line fourth in class, in tenth place overall. It was still a good points finish but not the one which she deserved after having the pace to win the class earlier in the race as she ran ahead of the eventual class winner.

It had been a frustrating weekend for the Hull driver with her results being restricted by car problems that were out of control but despite this she still scored some strong results including a class podium. The next rounds are at Silverstone in the middle of June where she’ll be hoping for a car at 100% so Abbie can demonstrate what she can do with a car at 100%. By Marc Waller

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