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Byrne Shows Promise but Luck Falters on Hectic Hockenheim Visit

Motorsport Ireland Young Driver of the Year Jack Byrne endured a frustrating weekend in Hockenheim as the European Clio Cup Series entered the first of two back to back race weekends.

With another new track to learn and with limited testing on the Friday, Byrne got stuck in and tested the limits on more than one occasion as he searched to get the perfect setup ahead of the first qualifying session on Saturday morning.

With over 40 cars on the grid, getting a clear lap was going to be the key to a good qualifying position and Byrne duly stuck his GPA Racing Clio on the second row of the grid, lining up in 4th behind a trio of previous Clio Cup champions in Gabriele Torelli, David Pouget and Anthony Jurado.

When the lights went out at the start of race one Byrne suffered a bad start and had dropped two places by the time the pack streamed onto the long back straight. Looking to move back towards the front of the pack, a mid race incident dropped the Wexford driver further back down the pack and he crossed the line in 9th place overall and bagged another Junior podium after a tough race.

Knowing he had another shot at redemption in race two, Byrne headed out for the second qualifying session in a confident mood after the pace shown on Saturday morning. However, this time around he was plagued by the traffic and as a result would line up in 14th place for the second race of the weekend.

As was the case in Portimao, Byrne was on a charge from the start to make up places and he soon found himself back into the top 10 and catching up to the fight for second place. Unfortunately bad luck would once again strike as he was forced to avoid an incident and the resulting contact with another car left him with damaged steering and his pace dropped as a result. A further incident on the final lap dropped him back to 16th place at the line to round off a promising but ultimately disappointing weekend. Byrne will now travel straight to Italy to take part in the second race weekend in Misano.

Jack Byrne #86 GPA Racing

“While we showed some great pace this weekend, we just seemed to find ourselves in the wrong place at the wrong time during the races. We have the balance now spot on for single lap pace but a few tweaks are needed to adjust it for the longer races but I’m very confident that me and the team will get there as we’ve made great progress since the start of the year. Again a massive thanks to my corporate partners for their support as none of this would be possible without them and we will be looking to bounce back immediately in Misano and get the results that our pace deserves.”

Jack Byrne is supported by

Motorsport Ireland | Sport Ireland | O’Brien Cement | West Wales Rally Spares | David Byrne Auto Repairs | Slaney View Motors | Ignite Training and Consultancy | Jack Newman Auto Services

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