Welham storms to Snetterton victories to take Rookie crown
- Credit: Archant
Ipswich racing driver Rob Welham has ended his debut season in the 365 Hosts F1000 Championship in style taking an impressive two race wins and a four place at Snetterton.
Rob has suffered more than his share of bad luck in recent weeks with an engine failure and fuel line fire but put these disappointments firmly behind him to record his first wins in single seater racing and come away with three trophies including the Circuit Champion Title.
Rob qualified eighth on the grid and lined up on a drying but greasy track for race one.
He made the decision to opt for slick tyres where others chose wets and made a blistering start moving up to fourth by the end of the first lap. With conditions proving tricky he sensibly consolidated fourth to earn a solid start to the weekend.
Race two began with the top eight reversed and saw him start fifth in very wet conditions. From lights out Rob proceeded to carve his way through the field into second place within a lap.
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By lap two he had closed down the leader and passed him with an overtake on the outside of Agostini Bend to take a well-deserved lead.
The Ipswich teenager dictated the pace with a superb display of wet race craft to cross the line an impressive 15.95 seconds in front of the second placed driver and take his maiden victory in front of a large crowd of family, friends and sponsors.
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Race two was a different matter entirely.
Changing conditions meant a dry track with damp/wet patches and low sun. Rob started in Pole having set the fastest lap times in both previous races. Lap one saw the lead change three times with Rob battling former champion Lee Morgan for position. Rob held his nerve to maintain the lead throughout the 15 minute race despite coming under enormous pressure from Mike Watton who had fought his way to second. Rob crossed the line 0.09 seconds in front to take a brace of victories and end his season on a high.
The two victories and fourth-placed finish meant Rob accrued the most points over the weekend and took the title of Circuit Champion, a fantastic achievement and thoroughly deserved.
Team Manager Frazer Corbyn said: "Rob did an amazing job at Snetterton. After having endured a bit of a run of bad luck over the last few race meetings Rob didn't let things get him down and to take his first wins in F1000 was great to see and well deserved. His potential has always been there, and to end the season with two race wins gives Rob a great spring board into the 2020 season."
This debut season has seen Rob take the Rookie Championship title and finish sixth from 23 in an extremely competitive championship. It could have been even better but due to the mechanical issues mid-season only finished 10 of the 17 races with six podiums and two Circuit Champion Titles.
2020 will see him return to F1000 and based on this performance he will be a strong championship contender next year.
For the latest news and updates on Robs progress go to