Duns native Jamie Thorburn has scored a first-ever Avon Tyres BRSCC National FFC1600 podium finish for the iconic Border Reivers team.
The 20-year-old displayed a level of cool maturity as others around him struggled to cope with the Kirkistown track’s high-speed layout.
Border Reivers, run by Jamie’s father Stuart and Hindley Circuits chief executive officer Richard Whitehead, was back to full strength with a newly refurbished engine, which showed in Jamie’s rapid pace all weekend.
Without a team-mate to use for slipstreaming in qualifying, Jamie lined up ninth for the first race, although such is the highly competitive nature of BRSCC National FF1600, his time was only 0.473s off pole position.
But Jamie’s pace in testing was only a tenth of a second off the best times, which would be a sign of things to come.
A great start in race one gained Jamie several positions on the opening lap and, by staying out of trouble as others made mistakes, he moved up to third, right behind the leading duo.
Driven to win by nature, Jamie went to the outside for an audacious pass for the lead, although was run out wide on the exit and had to settle for fourth.
Race two built upon Jamie’s brilliant charge up the field in the first encocunter. Despite a less than ideal getaway that dropped him behind James Clarke, Jamie picked his way past race one winner Michael Eastwell, then moved into third when Clarke crashed out, securing his first podium finish of the year.
Another mature drive in race three secured a trio of top five finishes at Kirkistown, an impressive feat for a driver competing with a first-year family outfit.
Jamie’s next event is at Silverstone, where Avon Tyres BRSCC National FF1600 will be competing on the National configuration on September 14-15.
“In race one, we were up to third and it felt like the win was on,” said Jamie. “But, on the last lap, Eastwell and Martin went to the inside, so I was thinking ‘If I don’t sent it on the outside, I’ll regret it tomorrow morning.’ I just got pushed a bit wide on the exit, so ended up fourth. Considering we started ninth, it was a good result and we finally got to show what the car can do.
“I feel like we had the pace to be on the podium.
“We got a little bit lucky to finish there in race two but, in the first race, we were unlucky not to have managed it, so I feel like it was redemption.
“Overall, the car was really good and the engine was strong.
Jamie added: “It’s pretty special to score a podium with a family team.
“But with the struggles we’ve had this year, it’s nice to finally get there and prove we can be quick.
“We are miles better than the eighth and ninth places which we’ve been scoring recently, so it’s been a really good weekend.”