Khani holds off Bridger for Silverstone double

22/09/12 - Lanan Racing's Kourosh Khani completed a perfect double victory as he held off a charging Jay Bridger in the second race at the famous Silverstone GP.

22/09/12 - Lanan Racing's Kourosh Khani completed a perfect double victory as he held off a charging Jay Bridger in the second race at the famous Silverstone GP circuit today (Saturday 22 September).  

The Iranian had to fight his way past Bridger at the start and despite being in the lead for the majority of the race he was unable to relax. The Omicron racer took chunks out of his lead towards the end but Khani held on to take the win from Bridger and Hamilton-Smith. Gino Ussi finished fourth ahead of his title rivals Tristan Cliffe and Chris Dittmann.  

Bright sunny conditions greeted the drivers for the start and the 50 car field all managed to get away cleanly. Bridger jumped Khani at the start but the pole sitter fought back overtaking the Omicron racer on the opening lap. Hamilton-Smith slotted in behind in third with Ussi in fourth and Dittmann in fifth. Mark Bailey Racing's Stuart Wiltshire made the best start as he surged past Tristan Cliffe into sixth.
Wiltshire was unable to maintain his excellent pace at the start and he soon dropped down to ninth with Cliffe moving back into sixth in pursuit of Dittmann. However, at the front Bridger continued to apply the pressure on Khani with the two only separated by 1.4 seconds.  
Prajesh Shah was the next man to make a move slipping into seventh with a smart move on Chris Needham. Another driving clawing his way through the field was Trophy Class runner Phil Austin as he passed Frank Thomas and moved on to the back of the chasing pack of Mark and Neil Harrison.
Khani continued to set a blistering pace slowly increasing the gap over Bridger with Hamilton-Smith comfortably ahead of Ussi, Dittmann and Cliffe. Austin continued his eventful race as a spin at Stowe saw him drop back into the pack with the racy Jeremy Timms.
Traffic once again played a part in the race and Bridger managed to take advantage of it cutting the gap to Khani down to eight tenths of a second. But Bridger's skill of negotiating traffic was not enough as Khani took the chequered flag. Hamilton Smith came home in third ahead of Ussi and Cliffe, who managed to pass Dittmann in the closing stages. Shah continued his impressive run in seventh finished ahead of Needham, Mark Harrison and Nick Robinson, who rounded out the top 10.
A delighted Khani said: "It's quite good to get four wins out of four in the F3 Cup. There was no time to relax at all due to the traffic and that is where Jay caught me. I had too push hard again to try an build up the gap."
A second podium more than matched Bridger's target for the weekend, he said: "If i did the race again I couldn't have done it much better. It was a good race and the plan was to try and keep the gap down to Kourosh and was hoping to make a move in the traffic. I got really close to him but just near the end I hit traffic and he got away again. I was pleased with the car and the team did a great job. I thought if i come in the top two I would be happy with that before the weekend. I don't think we could have done much batter."
Hamilton-Smith was pleased with his second podium of the weekend, he said: "It was good. I was first of the regulars. Gino started to catch me towards the end but I managed to hold my pace but i think third place was the best result I could get."
F3 Cup Race Two Silverstone GP Results
1. Kourosh Khani Cup Lanan Racing 10 laps    
2. Jay Bridger Cup Omicron Motorsport, +4.761s    
3. Louis Hamilton-Smith Cup +11.275s    
4. Gino Ussi Cup Grays Motorsport, +12.685s    
5. Tristan Cliffe Cup Omicron Motorsport, +19.930s
6. Chris Dittmann Trophy Chris Dittmann Racing, +24.759s    
7. Prajesh Shah Cup Chris Dittmann Racing, +37.488s  
8. Chris Needham Cup DST Group Ltd, +51.897s    
9. Mark Harrison, Cup, Magic Motorsport, +1.01.735s
10. Nick Robinson Cup Mark Bailey Racing, +1.03.631s      
11. Neil Harrison, Cup,  Magic Motorsport, +1.10.925s
12. Jeremy Timms, Trophy, +1.13.167s      
13. Stuart Wiltshire Cup Mark Bailey Racing, +1.19.517s 
14. Phil Austin, Trophy, +1.31.971s  
15. Frank Thomas, Cup, Mark Bailey Racing, +1.47.428s
16. James Ledamun, Trophy + 1 lap  
17. Dave Karaskas, Masters, Dave Karaskas Racing, +2 laps  
DNS Matt Payne, Cup  
DNS Fraser Smart, Trophy, Stanbridge Motorsport
DNF Jonathan Weston-Taylor, Trophy