The SD Sealants-backed Kevin Mills Racing squad returned to GB4 Championship action at Oulton Park on Easter weekend (16/18 April), claiming its first win in the category courtesy of a stunning drive from Jarrod Waberski.
The South African driver cruised to victory in the final race of the weekend at the Cheshire circuit after a remarkable weekend turnaround.
Tom Mills was also on the podium again with second place in race two, helping the team to another series of big scores across the event to keep KMR on top of the Teams’ Championship in the UK’s newest single-seater category.
Qualifying on Saturday featured the two cars claiming sixth and seventh on the grid for race one, with Mills ahead of Waberski, despite the latter missing half the session while the team worked wonders to fix a mechanical issue.
While Mills’ race was disrupted with a clutch issue on the grid, Waberski got his elbows out and fought his way up to third place at the end of the 18-minute contest, while Mills recovered a lap down to take 11th, but circulated with a pace comparable to the leader.
With the race two grid decided by each driver’s second-quickest times from qualifying, the pair lined up in fifth and ninth, with Mills the highest. He made immediate amends for race one by climbing to third on the first lap, and then fighting his way past Max Marzorati next time around at Old Hall corner to take second, which he held until the chequered flag.
Waberski meanwhile delivered some absolutely thrilling racing at a circuit not renowned for its overtaking possibilities. His charging drive was highlighted by a move on two cars on the penultimate lap at the tricky Lodge corner, almost interlocking wheels with Marzorati as the pair battled once more, with Waberski taking fourth place ahead of Megan Gilkes.
He started third on the grid for the final race of the weekend, with Mills due to start just behind him in fourth. But another issue, this time on the formation lap, meant the Brit was forced to start from the pit lane.
A lightning start from the South African driver meant he blasted into the lead on the short run down to the first corner, and he didn’t look back from there, cruising to his first victory on UK soil and the team’s maiden triumph in slicks and wings racing by over five seconds. Mills recovered to eighth place, scoring valuable points to ensure the team heads to the Silverstone Grand Prix circuit on 7/8 May with a seven-point lead at the top of the championship.
Jarrod Waberski said: “I’m really chuffed. The way the weekend started off, to finish with a win is just amazing, I can’t thank the team enough. I think this weekend is a good example of ‘never give up’. We put in good results – a third and a fourth and a win so I’m really chuffed, I couldn’t ask for much better.”
Tom Mills said: “I had a tough day on Saturday as I ruined the clutch on the warm up lap so I couldn’t get going. I was lacking a little bit of pace but I’ve really tried to dig deep and the team has done a fantastic job suiting the car to my style and trying to calm me down in my driving style. So I’m super happy that I got back on the podium.”
Team Principal Kevin Mills said: “It wasn’t bad was it? Our second meeting in GB4 and we’ve already won a race. And not just because it was a reverse grid race, as I think Jarrod had the pace all weekend.
“We were unfortunate in qualifying and had a problem with the boost pipe, but he drove really well in the races and was overtaking all the time. He really showed his pace in the last race, we’d saved our tyres for the last one and he made the most of it. It’s even more pleasing because he did no pre-season testing, he just turned up at Snetterton on the Thursday and started from there. So there’s still even more to come from him and you can see already that he’s only going to get faster.
“Tom turned up on Tuesday and was fast but perhaps overdrove for a couple of days and was on the back foot a little bit. But then he put that right and the second place on Monday morning in race two, you could see from the data that he was driving the car properly, it was really good. Then in the last race he was just unfortunate, he pulled up on the grid and the car just died on him. We looked at the data and I think the battery had just given up, so once it was running it was charging, but when the revs weren’t there it just stopped and it wouldn’t restart, so he was unlucky there. But we know what the problem was and we won’t let it happen again. We’ll put new batteries in both cars and move on from there.
“I think both drivers will go well at Silverstone. They’re both good in the fast corners and there’s a lot of them on the Grand Prix circuit, so we’re looking forward to that. We’re still leading the championship so I’m really pleased with how things are going.”
The next round of the GB Championship takes place at Silverstone on May 7/8, running in support of the Intelligent Money British GT Championship.