Jesse Chamberlain headed to Donington Park on Friday 2nd October for the final round of the Formula Vee Championship. The final round took place on Saturday 3rd October. Saturday morning brought qualifying, which took place at 9:05am. Jesse went out and managed to set a time to place him 11th on the grid for both race one and race two. Jesse thought the car seemed gutless, he was frustrated because he knew he was quick but on the straights it didn’t seem to go as quick as others were.
Race one took place at 11:55, Jesse lined up 11th on the grid eager to start the race. Jesse felt that he got a poor start off the line, this is unusual for him as he normally gets very good starts. He got pushed out wide as someone locked up coming up the inside of him, forcing Jesse to go really wide and hang on to avoid him. This meant he lost a few places, then Jesse’s oil pressure dropped three times which forced him to drop back towards the back of the field. The race was red flagged and took a restart, Jesse started from 11th once again. Once more Jesse got a poor start off the line, this made him know for definite that something was wrong. He lost places and had to make them up quickly to catch 1th. Jesse went up the inside of Martin Snarey flat out through the Craner Curves, then he came across Steve Bailey. Jesse shot up the inside of Steve for the next corner to take 10th , which is where Jesse finished. He nearly managed to get a ninth place finish but didn’t have enough speed to stay in front.
After the race Jesse and his father checked over the engine and discovered that one carb was opening fully and the other was only opening a quarter, which was not helping with speed. They got it fixed and ready for race two.
Jesse lined up on the grid ready for race two, he was starting from 11th. Unfortunately Jesse stalled it on the line, he dropped right to the back. He managed to fight his way from 27th to 14th within two laps, this proved what Jesse is capable of even when the speed just wasn’t there at all, it was worse than it was in race one. He knew the car wasn’t running right. He had a flat spot in 3rd and 4th gear just before he needed to change gear, which consequently slowed Jesse down as he was having to shift earlier. Jesse just wanted to finish the race, he knew he wouldn’t get much further up the grid but his focus was to finish the race. Unfortunately it wasn’t meant to be, the pedal stop nut unwound itself which caused the throttle to stick open. This resulted in Jesse going straight on into the gravel after slowing the car down as best as he could. If only it had not happened for two more corners then Jesse wouldn’t have had the DNF.
Jesse is determined to find out what is wrong with the engine that’s causing the issues. The last time it was run it suffered a big hit into a wall at high speeds. This was certainly not the way he wanted to end the season and potentially their time within the Formula Vee Championship but he knew he had to make do with what he had. The difference between the down draft and side draft was massive, especially as the down draft was a bit poorly. Jesse was really frustrated and annoyed because throughout the season when Jesse and the car have been on form they were within the top 10 as they have the pace to be there. At Snetterton Jesse was set to get a podium finish but the engine went bang. It seems they haven’t had much luck throughout the year, but they have stayed positive. It has been a character building year for Jesse and his team.
Jesse would like to thank all his family and team for their undying fantastic support for him, he feels he wouldn’t be able to do it without all of their support. He was looking forward to having a really good race weekend to end the season, which he would have dedicated it to his family and team but it wasn’t meant to be. He would also like to thank the whole Formula Vee paddock, in his words “you’re all a great set of guys and if we aren’t in the Vees next year, you will all be missed”.
Jesse is hoping he will be in a Porsche next year, competing in the Porsche Carrera Cup GB. He would to give a massive thank you to his manager/agent MotorsportPlus, in his own words “You’ve been amazing and lets get to work this winter and get on that Carrera Cup grid in April”. He is hoping to have a better year of racing next year. To keep up to date with Jesse’s plans head over to his facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/chamberlainracing?fref=ts
© Fay Tilley 6th October 2015.