17|04|2016 - UBRIQUE-BENAOCAZ HILLCLIMB

Second overall win for Javi Villa in the 2016 Spanish Championship.


Ubrique, 17th April: Javi Villa repeated his Estepona success at Ubrique, scoring his second overall win of the season at the second round of the 2016 Spanish Hillclimb Championship.

Compared with his victory at Estepona though, the Ubrique win was definitely harder to achieve mainly because of the very changeable weather. On Saturday, intermittent rain throughout the afternoon resulted in several interruptions in the proceedings caused by racing incidents, meaning the second practice climb had to be cancelled and making the tyre choice quite hard. For the timed climb that closed the first day of competition, Villa and all his team mates at BRC chose slicks tyres. However yet another delay, when they were already in the pre-starting area, meant that rain was back as they took the start but despite this Javi scored the best time of Category 2, 3:02.230, which, if it didn't rain on Sunday would be useful nonetheless.

The second day begun with hard rain for the final practice, but it stopped before the beginning of the next timed run and the road was drying up during the morning. Anyway, given that it was likely that some damp patches on the highest part of the route could be found, Javi, even if fitting slicks on his BRC, kept the setup for wet conditions to make the first of the two climbs that would decide the result. This combination put him first again in Category 2 with a time of 2:23.572 that was third overall, just behind the first two in Category 1, entered by the more powerful cars.

At the final climb, with a now totally dry road and his BRC B49 perfectly setup for such conditions, Javi showed again his speed, pushing hard to improve his previous time by almost six seconds with a 2:17.903 that gave him not only the win in Category 2 but also first position overall in the hillclimb.

With this win Villa gets an interesting advantage at the front of the Spanish Championship standings, the next round of which will be held at the beginning of May at the very fast Portuguese hillclimb of Falperra.

Javi Villa's own words: "A hard weekend because of the weather, it was raining, then stopping... we were struggling a bit, it was like we couldn't get it right. Yesterday it started to rain when we were already on slicks, today the track was perfect but we were still in doubt so we put slicks on a car setup for the wet. It was only on the final climb when we could really push, being the only one to get below a 20, we did 17.9 and that was enough to win overall so it was perfect. We've already taken two out of two, both times with the best time overall, but at this second meeting with the same tyres, as mandated by this year rules, we struggled a bit more than expected, but that's what it is, we've had to battle with that and now it's already time to look forward to the next race weekend in Portugal."
Official Overall Classification (PDF format)