News Walter Hayes Trophy

Martin sure he could’ve been a factor in WHT final

Scottish Formula Ford 1600 champion Ross Martin believes a top five finish in the Walter Hayes Trophy final was within reach, had it not been for a late-race engine failure.

The Graham Brunton Racing driver, who comfortably won heat two from pole, had been running eighth in the early stages when his Bold engine began to misfire.

It eventually let go three laps from the end coming through Becketts, ending what had been a promising weekend for the teenager.

“It was shame for the weekend to have ended like that really. I felt the engine going at the start of the race and I was just holding on in eighth or ninth,” said Martin.

“I was sitting in front of [Kevin] O’Hara, so I think a comfortable top five was there for me.

“It’s hard to say what would have happened of course but I believe I had the pace and was just watching the leading group fighting.

“All it needed was another car to be in there to make things different and that could have been me.”

Despite the non-finish, the Silverstone weekend was generally an upturn for the 17-year-old after a disappointing Festival.

“I thought I had good pace in the Festival but things just didn’t go to plan,” said Martin, who had to come through the Last Chance race at Brands Hatch and could only finish 16th in the final.

“The mistake in the semi-final cost me a real shot in the final which was obviously very frustrating.

“Silverstone was a positive weekend overall though. I pinned it off the line in my heat, didn’t get any wheelspin and felt really happy in the wet.”

Martin now shifts his attention state-side as he prepares to take part in the Mazda Road to Indy Shootout at the Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park in Arizona next month.

“I’ve been training a lot more recently to get myself ready for Road to Indy,” he said.

“I love fitness anyway and think I’m in good shape, but I’m sure it’s going to be such an intense experience out there.

“I’ve got a new partner on board, Cameron House Leisure Centre, and they have been fantastic in helping me out with things.

“They’ve halved my membership fee as well and I’ve been able to make the most of their facilities to get myself ready for December.”

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