OULTON PARK MARKS HALF WAY FOR JCW, JCW SPORT BATTLES

The Vertu MINI CHALLENGE reaches the halfway stage at Oulton Park this weekend, with two races taking place for the JCW and JCW Sport classes before the series heads into the summer break.

Defending champion Dan Zelos continues to top the standings for EXCELR8 after an impressive season to date, which has seen him secure five wins from the nine races run thus far.

In fact, Zelos has yet to finish lower than second this year, with a perfect 100 per cent podium record.

Zelos won three times at Snetterton last time out to extend his advantage at the top, and currently sits 58 points clear once dropped scores are taken into account. Take them out of the equation, and he’s scored 146 points more than anyone else in 2024.

His closest challenger in the points is rookie team-mate Max Hall, who added to his double win at Brands Hatch with another victory at Snetterton.

The teenager – who also heads the Rookie Cup – has scored four podiums in total, and would arguably have taken another victory had it not been for the gearbox issue that saw him lose out on a second Snetterton win after a dramatic race that saw him overhauled on the final lap.

Hall has a slender advantage over Jamie Osborne in the time race, with Osborne now sitting third in the overall standings ahead of NAPA Racing UK partner Lewis Selby.

Osborne finished inside the top five in each of the four races run at Snetterton, picking up a seasons best of second place in the race that rescheduled from Donington Park.

He will now bid to repeat his win of twelve months ago to maintain his own title challenge, whilst Selby – who continues to lead the Directors Cup – will be eager to bounce back from a weekend to forget at Snetterton that included two retirements and return to the kind of form that saw him score a win at Donington Park during the opening meeting of the year.

Dominic Wheatley holds fifth on the back of a double podium at Snetterton, with Nelson King currently rounding out the top six on the back of his strongest weekend of the campaign last time out – where he also made it onto the podium on two occasions.

Both drivers have shown the pace to fight right at the sharp end, with Wheatley the highest placed driver in the championship standings who yet to score a win in the JCW category.

Tom Ovenden, Nathan Edwards, Lydia Walmsley and Bradley Gravett currently round out the top ten, with Ovenden and Walmsley looking to add to the silverware they have already secured this season, with the latter having taken a fine third place finish at Snetterton.

Edwards and Gravett meanwhile are both keen to break onto the podium for the first time in 2024 whilst Marlo Cordell is amongst those on the fringes of the top ten looking to to make up ground.

In the JCW Sport class, Dylan Hotchin remains the man to beat at the head of the points despite his first winless weekend of the campaign at Snetterton.

Hotchin continues to head NAPA Racing’s Cameron Richardson and fellow JamSport man Ben Crossley in the standings, with JRW Motorsport’s Albert Webster the form man having picked up four wins from four last time out.

Bitcoin Racing’s Chris MacKenzie rounds out the drivers eligible to score points in the class, with the Sustainable Fuel Development car being run as an Invitational entry in the hands of Cooper racer Harvey Riby for the weekend.