Mikey Doble Jr was set to carry his recent run of form to Snetterton last weekend for another three races in the Ginetta GT5 Challenge just two weeks after scoring triple podium finishes at Snetterton in the BMW Compact Cup.
Mike and Mikey are no stranger to competing against each other after four competitive seasons of racing in The BMW Compact Cup. This weekend was one for the record books though as they became the first father son duo to both compete on the same grid in the GT5 Challenge, ran by Mikey's regular team Xentek Motorsport. Mike had a strong test in the car a week prior to the meeting which cemented his choice to make his debut in the championship the following weekend.
After much testing in the dry around the circuit, qualifying proved to be tricky as the heavens opened meaning it was going to be a wet session. On what looked to be a drying track, we elected to go with the more intermediate wet weather tyre but unfortunately the conditions began to worsen throughout the session meaning we did not achieve our full potential of results. Mikey qualified P8 for race 1 and P6 for race 2, still strong starting positions. Mike because of his age and lack of experience in the car qualified to enter into the pro-am category. Mike qualified P4 in the am's and P19 overall but considering it was his first drive in a GT5 car in the wet, it was a cracking effort.
Sunday for the first time this season saw all three races in one day. The first two races were completely dry conditions which lead to some super thrilling racing! In a field as competitive as the GT5's, overtaking a large number of cars in a 20 minute race is never easy. After a shaky start Mikey had fallen down to 14th place after two laps but after a strong fight back through the field he came home to finish seventh. Race 2 starting sixth, he again was fighting around the sharp end and managed to eventually finish sixth.
Mike Doble Sr was quick to learn how closely fought Ginetta racing is being involved in some amazing racing towards the front of the pro-am grid. Mike had two fourth place finishes narrowly missing out on the podium places.
The heavens opened and the racing gods shone down! A deluge of rain for race three meant that this race was going to take place in full wet conditions. A super result in this race would cap off what had already been a memorable weekend. Mikey started from P6 but unlike the other races he had a fantastic first lap and had moved up to fourth keeping up with the leaders and most importantly applying the pressure. The conditions became more treacherous as the race went on and keeping the car on the track proved difficult. At half distance Will Aspin in third place made a mistake going round turn 1 handing third place to Mikey, a first podium was now looming! The battle was not over as Aspin recovered well and was right back onto the tail of Doble pressuring him for the last quarter of the race. Then on the very last lap of the race, John Bennet spun out of P2 meaning the battle for third was now the battle for second!
On the last lap Mikey was fighting for what might have been the most important result of his racing career, Doble and Aspin were side by side on occasions but Mikey drove the perfect last lap to bring the car home second for his first Ginetta GT5 Challenge podium and also Xentek Motorsports first 1,2 finish of the season with team mate Josh Steed taking victory. The success was not over yet as father Mike Doble had a fantastic race making no mistakes and finishing third in the pro-am class!
This was a truly remarkable occasion for the Doble family and for the team with four of the five Xentek motorsport drivers scoring podium finishes. This has also elevated Mikey up to fourth in the overall championship standings, a brilliant effort against some extremely talented and experienced racing drivers. The next round will be in six weeks at Croft supporting the BTCC. To keep up to date with our motorsport follow Mikey's social media channels on Instagram and Facebook and check in with all news articles on the Mikey Doble Racing website.
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