Silverstone outing for Stenshorne


Martinius teamed up with Chris Dittmann Racing for the four-day event, which promised two days of testing, qualifying and three races. Supported by Hitech Academy, it was an opportunity to not only learn the circuit layout ahead of the F3 visit in July, but also to race in wet conditions, with which Martinius has minimal experience.

For Martinius this was also his first time in a GB3 car, so Thursday’s first session was very much about learning the car, the track and also a new team. He completed 12 laps in the first session, with a best of 1:54.590. Over the next three sessions Martinius focussed on sharpening his racing line round the 5.891km Grand Prix track, finding the braking spots and the limits and his times tumbled, with a best of 1:53.204 and a total of 48 laps.

A further two practice sessions were held on Friday, with one crucially taking place on a damp track, which would prove to be useful practice ahead of the predicted wet weekend. Again, Martinius shaved more time from his best and finished the day with a best of 1:53.182 and fourth in the classification.

Saturday’s qualifying session was fully wet. Martinius has only experienced one wet race to date, so the gloomy conditions were an ideal chance to explore the limit of the car, particularly since rain could be a feature on F3’sJuly outing. Martinius had posted a series of strong laps in the wet, tricky session, and would line up P14 for the first race.

Overcast conditions greeted racers in the afternoon, although the track remained dry. Martinius dropped back two places at the start, however put in another characteristic storming, hard-charging performance to claw back five places – the most of any driver in the field – to finish in ninth overall. On lap two he moved past Colin Queen, and then passed Patrick Heuzenroeder and Josh Irfan the following lap. He put in a series of blistering laps to close the gap to Arthur Rogeon and by lap 7 was right on his tail, eventually muscling past in a confident move around the inside of the Wellington Loop. The next target, John Bennett, was over two seconds further up the road however Martinius again put the hammer down to close the gap and overtake on the penultimate lap. On the final lap Martinius was amongst the fastest on track and finished right on the tail of eighth-placed James Hedley.

Unfortunately heavy overnight rains – which persisted into Sunday morning – yielded the cancellation of race two.

Martinius lined up in twelfth for the now-second race of the weekend on account of his second-fastest lap in Saturday’s qualifying. The race gave some useful learning, with the track remaining damp throughout the 10 laps. Martinius dropped down to P14 ahead of the three-way Fortec battle behind, but then lost some more ground when he fell back to 17th. As the track dried Martinius fought back to regain his starting position by the end of the race. 

Martinius commented: “It’s been a good weekend and I feel I have learned a lot. Silverstone is a great track and getting so much track time has been really helpful.

“The races themselves were interesting. Race one was a lot of fun. It was a tricky qualifying as it was the first time in the car for a competitive session and also in the wet. I dropped some places off the start but raced hard to finish P9. There were a lot of overtakes and when I was in clear air we were amongst the fastest cars out there. I enjoyed the battles for sure.

“The second race was tougher. The main focus of the weekend was to learn – I certainly did that and I am pleased we got that lots of running indifferent conditions under our belts. I feel that will give me a headstart going forward to the F3 race in July.”