Scottish Formula Ford 1600 champion Ross Martin has made his peace with the Walter Hayes Trophy after 12 months ago vowing never to return to the event.
In 2017, he won his heat and qualified for the final, but had to retire three laps from the finish. The furious Scotsman then told a journalist that he never wanted to participate in the meeting again.
Yet Martin, 19, is back at this year’s WHT racing a 2017 Ray and has qualified for the semi-finals with a third place finish in his heat.
“I had a heat win and a pole [in ’17], but I think the bad luck in the final with the engine giving out probably put me on a bit of a downer,” he explained. “That’s not a very nice attitude.”
He spoke to both organiser James Beckett and HSCC chairman Grahame White afterwards to apologise.
Martin is glad that he smoothed things over and is pleased he made the trip to Silverstone this year. He has qualified for the Mazda Road to Indy Shootout and sees the WHT as important practice, especially since he had to miss the Formula Ford Festival.
“I’m going to be going to the States in the middle of December and I thought I would be a bit rusty after completing the last Scottish Knockhill round two and a half months before that,” he explained.
“Coming down here and fighting against these tough guys, it’s definitely going to help going towards it and I think not doing the Festival and doing this was a good decision.
“I like this track and it’s an easy track to race because you can be within three or four tenths and still have a chance of winning the race…our outright speed doesn’t need to be there, but as long as I race hard I can win it. I’m just glad to be back.”