The 2018 Mazda Mx-5 Supercup, moved north of the border to sunny Scotland for rounds 4, 5 and 6 at the very picturesque Knockhill Race circuit. 22 year old, Worthing based racer Aidan Hills took the 970 Mile round trip, full of confidence after his first podium at Silverstone in Round 2, and sitting 5th in the championship out of 37 drivers.
Qualifying at a circuit like Knockhill is very important as it is a hard track to overtake and the weekend started off near perfect for Hills after qualifying 2nd just 0.03 seconds off of pole position.
Race 1 started on Saturday afternoon and Hills got a great start and very nearly stole the lead going into the first corner, but couldn’t quite make the move stick. Aidan Sat in 2nd position for the first few laps and battled for first, but took the mature decision and decided to settle for 2nd place, behind last year’s champion Luke Herbert, which was his best result in the championship so far.
“Race 1 was really good for me, I was faster than Luke at the beginning of the race but couldn’t capitalise and he just put his car where it needed to be. Coming home in 2nd was a good result for me, and it feels good to get another podium!”
Race 2 saw Aidan starting in 4th position. Another trademark fast start and Hills took a bold move to the outside of 2 cars at the tight hairpin. He came out the corner in 3rd and was quickly making progress for the lead position. With overtaking being so difficult at Knockhill Hills was really pushing to get into the top 2. After some implications of a safety car and on cold tyres Aidan ran wide through one of the corners and dropped back to 5th place, but managed to fight his way back to finish a strong 4th.
For race 3, and the final race of the weekend, the reverse grid format meant Hills would be starting in 5th place. Overtaking being tough, it was going to be tricky for Hills to get a good result from the race. A good start saw Hills move up into 4th place, he then set his sights on the top 3, taking 2 more places on lap 2. Aidan now found himself in 2nd position, and was right on the back bumper of the leader. He pushed lap after lap to try and force his way past the leader and even set a lap record in the process, but the defence was very strong. With 3 laps to go an unfortunate mistake by Hills let the pack behind catch up. After going off the track while battling with another driver Aidan had dropped back to 7th position and unfortunately didn’t have time to recover.
“Race 2 was good, I was sitting in pretty much a guaranteed podium place but I really wanted to win, I pushed a little too hard and went off, which was annoying. It was still good to get a nice haul of points in the championship though. Race 3 however, was really frustrating for me. I easily had the pace to win the race, but overtaking round here is so hard. In hindsight, I should have just settled for 2nd, but I’ve never done that in my life. I really wanted to get my first win, and showed that I definitely have the pace to do so. I should have had 3 podiums this weekend but that’s just racing. I’m one of the youngest in the field and I’ve still got a lot to learn. There are lots of positives to take from the weekend, especially having the fastest lap in race 3 and the lap record, and battling at the sharp end all weekend was good, it’s just a shame about the result in race 3. Massive thanks to DMH MOTORS, DMH Storage, Discount Tyre Worthing and of course my dad for all his support and help.”
Aidan still sits 5th in the championship after Knockhill, and looks forward to the next meeting at Brands hatch on the 2nd/3rd of June.