Webster remains upbeat despite being denied glory

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JOSH Webster is already looking ahead to his next challenge despite disappointment at Silverstone on Sunday, when he was denied the Formula Renault BARC title by Dino Zamparelli.

The Stowmarket speedster set up a final round showdown by winning the 11th race of the season on Saturday, but he was made to settle for second behind Matt Mason, while Antel’s Zamparelli gained the third place he needed to secure the championship.

Webster got a taste of what he could experience should he progress to Formula Renault UK next year by racing in front of tens of thousands of fans at the home of British motor racing.

Refusing to be downbeat, the 17-year-old said: “I’m certainly still in the stages of learning my racecraft and the skills you need to make your way, so I can’t be too despondent.

“If my career continues upwards then fantastic, and hopefully when I am Formula One world champion I can look back on it without too much worry.”

Formula Renault UK is the next level up from Formula Renault BARC, and should he progress to that series – which is always on the undercard of the prestigious British Touring Cars Championship (BTCC) – only Formula Three and GP2 would separate him and a dream seat in Formula One.

However, he is set to move forward without the Formula Renault BARC title, despite being the quickest man on the circuit all weekend – Zamparelli’s double podium made sure he was not relying on a slip up from Webster to lift the trophy.

Webster cruised to victory in round 11 by nearly four seconds, but his inability to pass Matt Mason cost him a double race victory at the home of the Formula One British Grand Prix on the same day Matt Neal clinched the BTCC title from Gordon Shedden and Jason Plato at the same circuit.

“People were saying I should be proud of what I’ve done,” said Webster, who has been supporting the East Anglian Children’s Hospice (EACH) this year. “I’m disappointed and happy – there are a lot of mixed emotions.

“It ended up that whatever I did, he would have won the championship, so that makes me feel a little better because it would have been worse knowing that if I’d won the race I could have won it.

“There are times when I could have passed Matt (Mason), but he was just a little bit too aggressive and could have taken me off, so what will be, will be.

“I’ve ended up in a good position – there has been some fantastic work from Fortec and my sponsors such as Nine Telecom, Admiral Group, Integra ICT, Sunwise, Melbek Technology, Everyone Active and Flying Saucer. Without them I wouldn’t be racing at all.

“Hopefully we can stay in partnership next year and move on to something a bit more challenging, go for some wins and hopefully a championship as well.”