Former Ginetta Junior racer Dan Harper impressed in front of his home crowd as he made his Porsche SuperCup debut at the British Grand Prix.
Harper, who currently leads the Porsche Carrera Cup GB, finished eighth overall in the Formula 1 support race, the best result of any guest driver so far this season.
Despite damage to his car after heavy contact at the start of the race, Harper was able to move up to 10th (after qualifying P11) early on.
The 18-year-old was closing in on the battle ahead when his race almost came to an early end five laps before the chequered flag. In an incident familiar to any Ginetta Junior fan, Harper was forced to take evasive action as he narrowly avoided a stranded car in the middle of the track.
Harper moved up to eighth and spent the remainder of the race defending against SuperCup regular Jaap van Laagen.
He held on to the position to take eighth, the best result of any guest driver so far this season.
“What a fantastic weekend,” Harper said. “The whole experience was incredible and to come away in the top ten against the most talented one-make Porsche drivers in the world is a really satisfying result for myself and the JTR team.
“Unfortunately qualifying put me on the backfoot for the race. The car was there and sadly I just didn’t put the sectors together. With the long lap and the tyre life, you only really get one lap to get it right and sadly a little mistake put me in 11th when the data showed we could have been top five.
“It was a tough race. I quickly found out that everyone is more aggressive on track compared to the Carrera Cup GB and if I could go back I’d probably have got my elbows out a bit more in the first few laps, but that’s racing and I was pleased to run in the top ten throughout.
“Eighth wasn’t quite the result I dreamt of, but I said heading into the meeting that a top ten result against this calibre of field would be good so I can’t be too disappointed. I loved every moment of the whole meeting and I can’t thank Porsche enough for giving me this opportunity.
“I took a moment on the cool down lap at the end to soak in the occasion, with lots of Union Jacks around the circuit and fans cheering and applauding us all. It’s a special moment for me to compete at the biggest race event in the UK for the first time and I’m immensely proud to have come home as the leading British driver in the race.”
Image credit: Porsche GB
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