Posted: 09.10.20 at 17:49 by The Editor
A SEASON of motorsport racing in America ended on a high for former Stanford-le-Hope schoolgirl Emily Linscott.
The youngster, who attended St Clere's School, has spent the past couple of months on the Mareican sports car circuit which culminated in the final rounds of the 2020 Lucas Oil School of Racing Formula Car Series in Sebring, Florida.
Emily, one of the most prominent young female racing drivers in the UK finished out her season with her strongest event of the year, and stood on the podium.
With no prior experience on the full Sebring layout, Emily arrived back in Florida just days after the previous event ended at Homestead Miami Speedway determined not to let her lack of experience hold her back. Building on the strong form she showed the previous week, Emily set the second fastest time in official warm-up, then qualified in sixth place for the first race of the event.
The long straights and the wide track width of Sebring always make for good racing, and in the Lucas Oil Formula Cars, this was to be no exception. The front pack of eight cars battled the entire race, with Emily running as high as fourth, then dropping to the back, and making her way back up to sixth place again before the checkered flag flew. During her charge through the field she also set fastest lap of the race and was rewarded with pole position for the second race of the weekend.
The second race also heralded a huge battle, with the same eight cars all in contention, and all drafting off one another and running side by side every lap. Emily stayed in the top five battle the entire race, and then made a bold move into the final turn on the last lap that saw her go back up to third and holding the position on the run to the line to mark her first podium finish of the 2020 season.
Qualifying for the final event of the season took place on the morning of 2 October, before the final race. Emily set the fifth fastest time despite not having a towing partner to work with and was focused on rounding out the weekend with another front-running finish. In the lead pack for the first few laps, she got pushed wide by a competitor, and was shuffled all the way to the back of the eight-car train for the second time during the race weekend.
Having learned from her experience in the first race, Emily made short work of battling her way back to the front, passing car after car, to start the final lap in third place across the stripe. On the last corner of the last lap she “sent it” down the inside, and for the lead of the race in a move inspired by her previous overtake from the race before that had worked perfectly.
This time, however, the famous Sebring bumps caught her out, she slid wide, making contact with another car, before taking the checkered flag in fourth place. Due to the series’ zero tolerance rules for contact, she was handed a time penalty that shuffled her back to ninth place on the official results sheet.
“I really enjoyed the track and the close racing it provided. I’m thrilled I finally got the 2020 monkey off my back and was able to stand on the podium again,” said Emily.
“Although the last race didn’t end how I would have wanted, I’ve finished this season driving the best I’ve driven all year and I’m looking forward to taking all of the experience I’ve gained this year into 2021.”
Emily is hoping to be back in action again in America in 2020, as she aims to have her first tests to prepare for 2021 before returning home to England.