It certainly was a fantastic finale to the season at Brands Hatch on the iconic GP circuit, with James Kellett securing P2 in the drivers’ championship with a P1 and a P3 finish in the two races.
P1 for James Kellett in Race One
P3 For James Kellett in Race Two
Celebrations for James Kellett on P2 in Drivers’ Championship and helping Rosland Gold Racing by Century Motorsport win the 2023 Carrera Cup GB Team Championship
James’ teammate also grabbed two podiums, so Rosland Gold Racing ended the series with 2 x Double Podiums! For the team it was a P1 & P3 in the first race, and a P2 & P3 in the second race for the Rosland Gold duo – thus winning the Team Championship for Rosland Gold Racing by Century Motorsport in its second season of the Carrera Cup GB series.
In Saturday’s qualifying James Kellett was P2 and teammate Josh Malin was P3 – so it was front and second rows on the grid for the first race on Sunday. With hopes of some decent points to be collected, the team was confidently assembled in the pit lane (with some having fingers crossed!). The lights went out – Race One was underway. Both James & teammate Josh got good starts, with James immediately getting into P1 and Josh, driving the ‘Pink Pig’ car, solidifying P3 as the cars rounded the Druids Hairpin after a breath-holding Paddock Hill Turn One. Later that lap James lost P1 momentarily, but grabbed it back almost immediately. There they stayed, with James in P1 and Josh in P3 and the front three were pulling away from the pack as the first few laps completed. Behind the first 3 rows on the grid there had been some ‘elbows’ on Turn 3 on the first lap, further back from the front few, and then a couple more incidents followed as the race continued – with a couple of unrelated retirements soon following – and then there was another contact that sent one car into the tyre wall and the safety car was deployed. The safety car continued on with the field now bunched up again as the damaged car was recovered then work started by the marshals to repair the tyre wall. This wall repair took some time, so the race was subsequently completed behind the safety car, with the chequered flag being waved some 3 laps early. With the race order standing, Rosland Gold had P1 and P3 – a double podium in Race One. Excellent!
As James Kellett won the race he had the duty of drawing a ball from the hat to see how many grid positions would be reversed for the second race. Out came the 4-ball! Perfect! The top four finishers of Race One would be reversed for Race Two, with grid positions now to be Josh Malin in P2 and James Kellett in P4 for this second and final race of the season.
So, off to lunch where team championship points were checked and it just needed a sensible ‘out of trouble’ second race to secure the Team Championship. It soon came round, and after more team talks it was time for Race Two. Lights Out – another good start from both the Rosland Gold drivers saw the positions stay as per grid order until around lap 4 when Josh Malin was overtaken by the P3 car – although the overtaking car had been exceeding track limits a number of times so would eventually rightly receive a 5-second penalty. But no-one knew as yet, and the 17-lap race continued in that order until the chequered flag. With the penalty applied to the offending car it saw Josh finish P2 and James finish P3. Another double podium for Rosland Gold Racing!
The results cemented the Team Championship for Rosland Gold Racing by Century Motorsport. A fantastic weekend and perfect ending to the season. P2 in the drivers’ championship was a fantastic achievement – James said a massive thanks to the Century Motorsport Team guys and shared congratulations with teammate Josh Malin, who finished P3 in the drivers’ championship.
Regarding the drivers’ championship, it is worth noting that James didn’t have a good start to the season through no fault of his own. In the first race of the season at Donington Park he was knocked off the track into the gravel resulting in steering rods being broken, then having to start at the back of the pros in the second race because of the DNF, which saw him work his way through the field in torrential rain, but obviously being nowhere near where he would have been unhindered. Then in the third meeting of the season being knocked off at Thruxton that caused a pit stop and another resulting poor finish – thus having to start down the grid for Race 2 there aswell – so we can say that James did remarkably well to secure P2 in the drivers’ championship. Without those ‘no own fault’ incidents the drivers’ championship could have had a different winner. But that’s by the by – an excellent achievement in his first season driving the GT3 cup car. As for James’s teammate Josh Malin, he didn’t join the team until the 3rd race meeting, so only completed 12 of the season’s 16 races – yet he still managed to finish P3 in the drivers’ championship! That alone is worthy of great applause. Excellent driving by both the Rosland Gold drivers – a fantastic achievement by both.
It was a happy paddock for Rosland Gold and Century Motorsport, with photos and celebrations continuing well after the racing had finished.
James Kellett leads in Race One at Brands Hatch in the penultimate race of the season