Determined Dittmann holds off Stutely and Hamilton-Smith for cracking victory

13/05/2012 - Chris Dittmann came through a titanic battle at the front to win the first race of the Silverstone Shootout making him the third different winner of the 2012 F3 Cup.

13/05/2012 - Chris Dittmann came through a titanic battle at the front to win the first race of the Silverstone Shootout making him the third different winner of the 2012 F3 Cup.

A field of 25 cars took part in the race, the biggest grid of the 2012 season but it was Dittmann who triumphed as he held off Donington winner Linton Stutely and Louis Hamilton-Smith in what was a cracking battle at the front. There was plenty of action in the midfield and for the top six positions with Gino Ussi fourth, Tristan Cliffe fifith and Mark Harrison sixth, blowing the title race wide open.

It was Hamilton-Smith who made the best start to the race as he stormed into the lead but he was adjudged to have jump started and was given a 10 second time penalty. He was unable to maintain his advantage as Dittmann and Stutley surged past following a mistake at Brooklands while Omicron Motorsport's Cliffe dropped to fouth position just in front of Ussi.

The midfield battle proved to be frantic with Chris Needham and David Scott making strong starts with Needham moving up to 12th place and Scott up to 13th position.

At the front Dittmann began to open up a small lead but he was unable to relax with Stutely and Hamilton-Smith large in his mirrors. The attention soon swung to the battle for fourth with Cliffe falling into the clutches of Ussi and the impressive debutant Jeremy Timms. On lap five the trio went three wide into Becketts with Timms trying his luck around the outside, but it was Ussi, who grabbed the position with Cliffe fifth and Timms sixth.

Needham's disappointing weekend continued as he was forced into the pits and into retirement with a mechanical problem along with Richard Purcell. Benjamin Harvey was the next to visit the pits and subsequent retirement.

Another driver enjoying his race was Mark Bailey Racing's Nick Robinson as he latched on to the back of the top-six in seventh position. Meanwhile at the front Dittmann continued to hold the lead and extended his advantage while Stutley fell back just in front Hamilton-Smith.

As the race reached its climax Timms spun at Brooklands trying to pass Cliffe which allowed Mark Harrison and Robinson passed.

In the end nobody could touch Dittmann and he went on to take the chequered flag to become the third differnet winner of the 2012 F3 Cup season. He finished ahead Stutely and Hamilton-Smith. Ussi finished fourth ahead of Cliffe, Mark Harrison, Robinson, Timms, Scott and Alf Skeels, who completed the top 10. James Simons triumphed in the Masters ahead of James Ledamun.

F3 Cup Race 1 Full Results

1. Chris Dittmann (Trophy) 20 laps
2. Linton Stutely (Trophy) +6.538s
3. Louis Hamilton-Smith (Cup) +13.061s
4. Gino Ussi (Cup) +17.478s
5. Tristan Cliffe (Cup) +22.154s
6. Mark Harrison (Cup) +22.996s
7. Nick Robinson (Cup) +25.604s
8. Jeremy Timms (Trophy) +30.283s
9. David Scott (Cup) +39.202s
10. Alf Skeels (Trophy) +40.215s
11. Dave Karaskas (Trophy) +44.032s
12. James Abbott (Cup) +45.718s
13. Tony Bishop (Cup) +49.842s
14. Stuart Wiltshire (Cup) +52.500s
15. Prajesh Shah (Cup) +1 lap 
16. Stephen Clegg, (Trophy) +1 lap
17. Neil Harrison (Cup) +1 lap
18. Matt Payne (Cup) +1 lap
19. James Simons (Masters) +2 laps
20. James Ledamun (Masters) +2 laps
21. Winston Graham (Trophy) +4 laps

DNF Ben Harvey
DNF Richard Purcell
DNF Philip Austin
DNF Chris Needham

Grid for Race Two

1. Chris Dittmann
2. Louis Hamilton-Smith
3. Linton Stutely
4. Jeremy Timms
5. Benjamin Harvey
6. Tristan Cliffe
7. Gino Ussi
8. Mark Harrison
9. Nick Robinson
10. Tony Bishop
11. David Scott
12. Alf Skeels
13. Dave Karaskas 
14. James Abbott
15. Stuart Wiltshire
16. Prajesh Shah
17. Stephen Clegg
18. Neil Harrison
19. Richard Purcell
20. Matt Payne
21. James Simons
22. James Ledamun
23. Philip Austin
24. Chris Needham
25. Winston Graham