Esmee Hawkey had suffered an accident in testing before the weekend and although she was fine, the car couldn’t be fixed in time for the weekend.
This was the first circuit that Sophia had previous experience of as she had first tested a Ginetta here before the season when she had been deciding where to race. She already puts the circuit among her favourites.
Sophia had car problems herself in practice, nothing as dramatic as a crash but there was a problem meaning she was unable to get full power leaving her further down the order than she might expect.
Things were back to normal for qualifying though with Flörsch setting her best laps of the weekend to take pole for the first race later on Saturday.
Sophia got a great start for the first race on Saturday afternoon but unfortunately rival and team mate Jamie Caroline got a better one, managing to pass around the outside on the first corner. She followed him for the rest of the race but was unable to find her way past. It made more sense to take the second place than to risk a collision with her team mate. “I noticed that I was racing against an experienced driver,” Flörsch said after the weekend, “but I was sure that I would finish in the top 3 again on Sunday.” As well as second overall, she’d taken another rookie class win.
As the second race got underway on Sunday, Jamie Caroline drew alongside. Sophia tried to stay ahead but Billy Monger appeared from behind and got past as well. This allowed Caroline to disappear into the distance while she battled with Monger. The two came together a couple of laps later at the hairpin with them both losing positions. Sophia had dropped to fourth with Monger dropping further down. She passed one of her rivals again at the hairpin taking third place again and second in the Rookie class.
She explained her race afterwards;
“I didn’t want to risk a crash and that’s why I filed into P3,” said Flörsch, “Championship points were more important to me.”
“I was able to demonstrate what I am capable of – driving is fun like this. Many thanks to HHC Motorsport and my mechanic Gaz. It is great driving in this team. Thanks also to the sponsors who made everything possible.”
Ginetta Juniors now heads into the summer break and there is some confusion about Sophia’s plans. She had said championship points were important to her after the Ginetta race but since the weekend she has spoken about not racing in the championship again. She did speak about Formula 4 after the weekend but this was initially assumed to be about 2016
“My major goal is to start from the grid in Formula 4 with the same success right from the start. I will work hard to achieve this and train as hard as possible.”
We currently don’t know if we’ll see her back in Ginetta Juniors or if she is stopping to concentrate on moving to one of the Formula 4 championships once she is old enough. She has made clear that her ultimate goal is to race and win in formula 1.
She is currently leading the rookie championship and is third in the overall Ginetta Junior standings.
As soon as we get any further news we’ll report on it here. By Marc Waller