Cobra Sport's rising star Ronan Pearson put in two battling performances on track at Oulton Park to salvage a pair of top twelve finishes from the latest rounds of the Quaife MINI CHALLENGE at Oulton Park.
The Scottish youngster was eager to try and return to the podium places at the Cheshire circuit, which would host the only double-header of the season due to a tighter schedule that prevented the usual three races from being run.
After a tricky pre-event test on Friday, the Cobra Sport backed driver put his car in twelfth place on the grid in qualifying, with a small error on his quickest lap costing him time that would have left him well inside the top ten.
Maintaining his place at the start of race one, Ronan would spend the whole race battling on track with fellow Scots Ru Clark and Robbie Dalgleish, and crossed the line at the end of the 20 minute encounter having managed to climb into eleventh place - little reward for the effort that had gone in on track.
Eager to try and battle his way forwards in the second race, which was held in tricky conditions as light drizzle began to fall, Ronan jumped up into ninth spot on the opening lap and would dice throughout with Bradley Gravett - briefly getting up on two wheels at the hairpin as he tried to find a way ahead.
Finally able to make a move stick on lap eleven, Ronan would end the weekend with an eighth place finish having struggled for a straightline speed, and will now hope to return to the front-running positions when he arrives on home soil at Knockhill for the next round in late July.
"It’s been tough this weekend as the car has been handling fantastically but for some reason, we’ve been lacking straight line speed," he said. "That has made life difficult because I could get onto the back of people in the corners, but then they were able to pull away on the straights and at a circuit like this, you really need that grunt in a straight line.
"I had to fight really hard to try and make up ground, as I showed in race two when the car got airborne on the kerb at one stage. That wasn't planned and not the ideal way to take the corner - and I didn’t know if I was going to be able to save it!
"We managed to make up places in both races which is the important thing after qualifying, and it was a case of damage limitation to an extent when it comes to the points.
"Now I can look ahead to Knockhill and hopefully when we get there next month, we’ll be able to fight for some strong results."