Donington Park - JEC Jaguar XK & Mike Hawthorn Series' 29th July

JEC Jaguar XK Race Series 2018

Again running with the Aston Martin Owners Club in the Jack Firman trophy race, it was the 3rd race for both the Saloon & XK Series’. They both compete in the same race but seek different honours.

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The conditions demanded extreme precision as drivers fought the dreadful conditions and this was reflected in the lap times. In the end MK1 3.4s annexed the front row, with Richard Butterfield leading John Young (in the Nigel Webb car) by 0.311 of a second. Chris Keith-Lucas in his XK150 led the XKs from front-running Paul Kennelly’s similar car. The Derek Pearce MKII, still showing battle scars from the Classic Le Mans trip was next. There, in the hands of Tom Lenthall, the bonnet flew up on the Mulsanne Straight at 130mph. He fortunately was able to bring the car to a safe stop. Amongst the wet weather maestros, Simon Seath’s beautiful grey MKI qualified well.

Paul Kennelly Cg 2
Claire Keith Lucas Ahead Of Derek Pearce Cg
Start 1 Rg
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Unfortunately, Daren McWhirter’s MKI non-started with unspecified problems, leaving him with a long drive back to Scotland. Poor return for the effort.

This was a 30-minute rather than a sprint race, with changing weather conditions. From a rather patchy, drying track at the start, rain and drizzle drifted in mid-race.

Pearce picked up a 10 second penalty for joining the grid late after a fuel pump was accidently switched off during the warm up lap.

The start was very fraught as the as 6 cars spun in trying to avoid each other at Redgate with the remaining cars picking their way through very carefully. All eventually recovered from the gravel, grass & pointing in the wrong direction to continue. The exception being the MKI of Roger Cope, who was nudged by an Aston Martin, the resultant bumper and wing touching the tyre causing his retirement. So unlucky. Young led the Jaguars and the race after the Redgate spins – right up to the last lap where a 50’s Turner overtook to take the race win. Young was still the first Jaguar home. The race continued with the spinners fighting their way back through the pack. The most notable was Butterfield who, from 12th on lap 1, clawed his was up to 5th on the penultimate lap and eventually up to 4th on the last lap. Kennelly led the XK’s on lap 1 closely followed by Pearce, who dropped to 4th but recovered to finish 3rd in the Hawthorn Challenge. Both Kennelly (XK) & Butterfield (MKI) winning ‘Driver of the Day’ in their respective races. Meanwhile, a number of drivers suffered spins & related sideways moments as the rain drove in around lap 10, posing a severe challenge. Chris Keith-Lucas (XK150) drove a fast and sensible race to take the class win from wife Claire. Robert Salisbury’s MKI just missed a saloon podium spot which Simon Seath held on to.


JEC XK Challenge

Overall: Winner Paul Kennelly, Runner Up Chris Keith-Lucas, 3rd Claire Keith-Lucas (XK150s)

Class A: Winner Paul Kennelly, Runner Up Chris Keith-Lucas, 3rd Claire Keith-Lucas (XK150s)

Class C: Winner Rob Pinchbeck (XK150S)

Drive of the Day: Paul Kennelly (XK150S)

Mike Hawthorn Challenge

Overall: Winner John Young, Runner Up Richard Butterfield, 3rd Derek Pearce

Class B: Winner John Young, Runner Up Richard Butterfield, 3rd Simon Seath (MKI)

Class C: Winner Derek Pearce (MKII)

Drive of the Day: Richard Butterfield

For times, go to:

Photos: Roger & Chris Gage.

Additional Gallery:

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Dave Brassington Photography

Galley from Dave Brassington

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