Mondello Park, Kildare, Ireland – Wednesday 12th April 2017: Fourteen year old Patrick Dempsey traveled to Mondello Park in County Kildare last weekend for the third and fourth rounds of the Ginetta Junior Ireland Championship. Coming off the back of a dominant double victory, double pole position and netting the fastest lap in both races last time out in Kirkistown, Dempsey took maximum points to put himself into an early championship lead, something he was keen to maintain at the Kildare circuit.
Getting the day’s events underway early on Sunday morning as the first qualifying session on circuit, Patrick quickly asserted his command on the class. Topping the time-sheets throughout the session, he secured a pole position start for both of the day’s races, and with it, maintained his 100% pole position starting record this season.
Intent on repeating his domination from Kirkistown, Patrick placed himself into an early race lead, despite a poor getaway off the line. As the laps passed during the race, Dempsey had built a significant advantage at the head of the field, but just after the midway point suffered a slight indiscretion coming down into turn three, leaving him briefly off the circuit before returning to the track now in fourth position. Proving that he’s never one to give up, Patrick put his head down and was quickly back up to second which he would maintain to the chequered flag and with it, some valuable championship points in addition to his bonus point for the fastest lap of the race.
Once again starting race two from the top spot, Dempsey and main championship rival Cameron Fenton went door handle to door handle into the first corner. With the latter having the advantage into turn two, Patrick slotted himself into second, but firmly on Fenton’s rear bumper and ready to pounce for position at a moment’s notice. Over the coming laps, it was nip and tuck at every corner, Dempsey using every ounce of skill built up over the last year of moving to car racing, to try and find a way past his older rival. However coming out of the infamous turn three and looking set to mount a charge for the lead, the back of Patrick’s Computex Ginetta G20 broke away, leaving him spinning onto the grass. Recovering himself back onto the circuit, Dempsey lit up the timing screens and set a sequence of fastest laps as he worked his way back up the order. Coming out of the last corner for the final time, Patrick had made substantial gains on the race leader but just ran out of time before he could mount his second attack of the race.
The BD Recruitment driver’s impressive recovery drives combined with his pair of fastest laps and pole position starts keep him in the lead of the overall title race as the championship takes its annual sabbatical to allow exam students to focus on their studies, before the series resumes at Mondello Park on Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th July.
Patrick Dempsey – #23 Team MCP Ginetta G20:
“Overall it was a good weekend as got off to a good start being quickest in testing and then pulled it out of the bag in Qualifying to secure another double pole. Both races were very similar for me, I didn’t get the best start off the line in either, but in the first race I managed to lead and in the second I definitely had the pace to get back out in front. I learned a few valuable lessons today in how to control a race lead when you build a big gap, but the important thing for me is that I still managed to recover and secure some important championship points, including the fastest lap in both races. I’m still in the lead now by four points going into the break and winning the title is my main aim this year. A big thanks to Morgan Dempsey and Team MCP for giving me a fantastic car over the weekend. None of this would be possible without my sponsors ComputeX, BD Recruitment and Forde Scaffolding for their continued support this year.”
Rounds 5 & 6, Mondello Park, Saturday 8th & Sunday 9th July 2017.
After two superb recovery drives, Dempsey maintains his Ginetta Junior Ireland Championship lead.
Dempsey remains the only man to start from pole position this season combined with his maximum score of fastest laps.
Patrick Dempsey is quickly marking himself out as one to watch for the future. From Corofin in Galway with Scottish roots through his father Mark, Patrick has been climbing the Irish Motorsport ranks through Cadet & Mini-Max Karting before making the giant leap to cars for 2016. Joining Ginetta Junior Ireland as one of the youngest drivers at just 14 years old, Patrick instantly made an impression when he got his championship started with a podium at his first round. For 2017, Dempsey is hoping to carry the valuable experience gained last year to mount a championship title bid in only his second season racing cars.