Shanel Drewe Leads Croft

Track action (Photo by Phil Laughton Photography)Sean Cassidy, team owner of Damar International and Milltec Sport backed Jade Developments described the first race of this weekend’s Michelin Clio Road Class Championship as perhaps the most exciting he has seen,

and this marks another step up for the teams new 16 year old female driver Shanel Drewe, in what is only her second race weekend in the championship.

Starting 3rd on the grid Drewe had a great start and pulled off a brave overtake on the much more experienced Colburn at the end of the fast pit straight by driving round the outside of him into the first corner to take second place. The top three cars of Harrison, Drewe and Colburn then lead the road class in bumper to bumper action.

Shanel showed true maturity by defending multiple attempts by Colburn to claim back second place, whilst attacking Harrison. On lap three Drewe finally managed to pull alongside Harrison coming out of the chicane and passed him going into Tower Bend.

For the first time in her racing career, Drewe then lead the race with Harrison pushing her all the way, and the Jade Development Team mates pulled away from Colburn to become the main contenders for the race win. Drewe showed phenomenal maturity by holding off Harrison, until the second but last corner on the last lap where Harrison managed to get by in one last attempt, and Shanel finished second.

This was a bitter sweet pill for Shanel, for being so close to a maiden win, but she is very reflective adding, “when racing against a fourth season Clio racer with the experience such as Harrison, I know it will not be easy, but that will make my first win all the better”.

Shanel Drewe (Photo by Phil Laughton Photography)In the second race, again the drivers got off to a fantastic start, and it looked for a moment that the crowds were going to be subject to another thrilling spectacle, but this was sadly not the case as an out of place race class car split the first and second place drivers allowing the front runner Harrison to build a vital 3 second buffer in front. In third and keen to aim for another shot at winning, Drewe again showed fantastic ability by overtaking second placed Colburn going into the Hairpin at the end of the first lap. From there, Drewe’s developing pace become very evident as going into lap two Drewe and Colburn were split by only 0.1 seconds, by lap two this was a clear second, and she continued to be on average a second a lap quicker. This allowed Drewe to build a much needed buffer, but the 3-4 second gap front runner Harrison was able to build in the first lap was as equally important and although Drewe matched Harrisons times, getting to within 0.2 secs of the fast lap of the race, she could only remain a menacing sight in his mirrors, and finished a solid 2nd place.

This was only Shanel’s second race weekend in her Clio. At Silverstone she was on average perhaps slightly behind the pace of the seasoned front runners of the Championship, but this weekend clearly shows she has now split them which reinforces the underlying pace Jade Developments first saw in Shanel, and the belief her personal sponsors of Dansoft Aviation Services, Wrapped Up, Witham Oils (sole importers of Motul), City Electrical Factors and Gold Star on Board have shown in her.

For Jade developments this is a double 1-2 of the weekend, and for Shanel, she has achieved a fantastic three 2nd places and a 3rd place so far this year. Her maiden win cannot be far away.

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