Erstwhile Formula Renault BARC Championship leader Menasheh Idafar produced one of his customary pace-setting performances during testing at Oulton Park International Circuit earlier today, Friday, 16th May.
The 17-year-old British-born Bahraini racer, who is second in the title race ahead of the fifth round of the season at the Cheshire venue’s shorter Island Circuit just over a week from now, lapped the International configuration in a time of 1m 37.7 seconds this afternoon to emerge fastest after three of the day’s four sessions.
An unfortunate water leak on his Hillspeed car prevented Menasheh from running during the final test period and this enabled rival Nathan Coulter to lap a shade faster – by a 10th of a second to be precise – but it was largely due to improved track conditions and the fact he was utilising new tyres.
Taking all that into consideration, Menasheh is feeling very confident ahead of round five and has no doubts at all his Hillspeed squad will once again provide him with a strong car in both qualifying and race trim.
“I’m really looking forward to the next race at Oulton Park, especially after today’s test went so well”, commented the Gulfol, Ortolan and Gulf Computer Services backed driver, “Although we were on the full International track today, it was still very good practice and I’m really pleased with the pace we showed again.
“The car was perfect during the three sessions we were on track. It was a shame we had the small water leak but these things happen sometimes. It would be great to qualify on the front row when we return to Oulton Park a week on Monday but if we can start the race inside the top four, I’m confident we’ll be able to challenge strongly for the podium.”
Travelling back to his home in Bahrain this evening, Menasheh will return to the UK next weekend in readiness for round five of the 2008 Formula Renault BARC Championship at Oulton Park. Taking place on Spring Bank Holiday Monday, 26th May, qualifying is timetabled to start at 10.25 with the 12-lap race scheduled to get underway at 14.40.