2011 NEWS

 

3rd December 2011

Enigma Motorsport sample new car and talent at Silverstone

Enigma Motorsport were present at the annual British Formula Ford sampler day to show off what the team can do for potential drivers in 2012. The team boss and driver coach, Linton Stutely also got chance to sample the future of the series by testing the new Formula Ford EcoBoost car. With its striking looks, turbo-powered engine and sequential gearbox it is a big step forward from the cars the championship has used for several years. Linton enjoyed the experience and said: "I'm impressed with the new car, it is so easy to drive"

 

Also the team ran George Blundell, Fred Martin-Dye and Dave Turton in the teams Mygale chassis, with all three drivers impressed with the car and team.

 

If you are interested in driving for Enigma Motorsport in 2012 or testing one of our cars, please feel free to get in touch with us to discuss your requirements at race@enigmamotorsport.co.uk or contact us using the contact page. We are also available to run your own machinery and provide technical support to you.

 

 

 

17th October 2011

Tofts scores record hat-trick with Enigma as Palmer shines on comeback

In 2010, Neil Tofts was on course to win a record third Formula Ford Festival class win only to crash out uncharacteristically on lap 2. He returned this year to set the record straight in his Mygale recently repaired by Enigma Motorsport and set the pace all weekend. After setting the fastest time in qualifying he started the first heat from pole and led from lights to flag. In Sunday's final, again he dominated the race leading every lap to win by over 12 seconds. It is the first time in Formula Ford Festival history that the same driver has won three wins in any class.

 

Chrissy Palmer made his comeback at the Formula Ford Festival with Enigma in the Duratec class in the Mygale campaigned by Philippe Layac throughout the season. The 2009 winner was immediately on the pace during the weeks testing. Problems in qualifying put Palmer in 7th position for the first heat and the team scratching their heads. After a change of set-up he climbed to a 4th place finish in the heat.

 

Things didn't go quite to plan in Sunday's quarter-final with Chrissy looking to push on from 4th place. After an incident at Graham Hill bend put him in the pits and to the back of the field with a slightly damaged car. The team sent him back out and he finished 8th, three laps down and on the back foot for the semi-final, where he made progress and finished in 5th place. With the cars from two semi-finals combining for the final, Chrissy started 9th with a pack desperate for success in the 20 lap final. After a great start, Palmer was running in a pack led by Antti Buri and Geoff Uhrhane, who to an extent where holding fastest drivers behind with overtaking difficult on the short Brands Hatch Indy circuit. Eventually Chrissy slipped past and made up some time finishing in 4th place and a great result for the team and the King of Shaves sponsored car.

 

Regular driver, Philippe Layac didn't fair so well at the 2011 Festival. Driving a Ray chassis recently re-built by Enigma, Philippe suffered from a lack of time in the car. He failed to set a time in qualifying so started in 14th place for the first heat. He drove a creditable race to finish in 8th place. However, his weekend was cut on Sunday with a nasty crash on the start/finish straight which caused the race to be stopped. Phillippe walked away unscathed but the resulting damage meant an early exit from the weekend.

 

Enigma Motorsport will now head out to India to compete in the MRF Formula Championship with Chrissy Palmer and Philippe Layac. The team will help prepare the King of Shaves cars for the pair in the races which will support the inaugural Formula 1 India Grand Prix in New Delhi. Stay tuned to the website for updates.

 

 

 

9th October 2011

Festival winner of 2009 Palmer to return with Enigma Motorsport

Former Formula Ford Festival winner Chrissy Palmer is set to make a comeback at this years Festival at Brands Hatch with Enigma Motorsport. Palmer, the 2009 winner will drive the same Enigma prepared Mygale driven by Philippe Layac in the British Championship this season.

 

Chrissy has recently returned to Formula Ford racing as a guest driver and is looking to become the only double winner of the Duratec Formula Ford festival. This year’s festival is made all the more special as it represents the curtain fall for the current generation of Duratec powered cars before the new FIA homologated cars are introduced for 2012.

 

Enigma Motorsport will also be fielding double Zetec Formula Ford Festival winner Neil Tofts for a third year, Neil won the title with the team in 2009 and was undoubtedly the class of the 2010 field until an uncharacteristic crash whilst leading last years final put pay to his ambitions of a hat-trick of wins.

 

Team manager Thomas Farquhar said, “Having Chrissy onboard is an excellent opportunity to really show the potential of the car that the whole team knows it has, his pedigree as a driver speaks for itself and we are all very excited about pushing for the overall victory.”

 

The current Enigma driver, Formula Ford stalwart Philippe Layac, will also be in action driving the teams newly re-built Ray chassis that Philippe competed with in the 2010 Championship. Philippe added, “It’s going to be an adventure reacquainting myself with the Ray chassis, however, especially if it rains I believe I can cause a surprise. Also having Chrissy Palmer onboard should really serve to show the full potential of Enigma”

 

The 2011 Formula Ford Festival signifies the end of the 2011 season in the UK for both drivers, however both Chrissy and Philippe, as well the Enigma engineering team, will be representing their respective countries just two weeks later driving in the Indian MRF series supporting the inaugural Indian Formula One race in New Delhi.

 

 

 

9th October 2011

Layac clinches 7th in championship finale

The final round of the MSA Dunlop Formula Ford Championship of Great Britain was held at Silverstone on the new Grand Prix circuit, new to many drivers in the field. Nineteen drivers entered the final round preparing for the Formula Ford Festival in just under a weeks’ time.

 

Qualifying came on a cold Saturday morning with Enigma/RVR driver Philippe Layac pushing hard for 10th. The afternoon’s session was race 1, and Philippe battled all race with Cliff Dempsey Racings’ Neil Alberico. Philippe made up two places in the race to finish 8th.

 

As the cars waited in the assembly area for race 2, rain played havoc with set-up and tyre choice. Many teams prepared for a wet race while Enigma chose to stay on slicks. It paid off when Philippe made up another place to 8th, as many struggled in the greasy conditions. The last race of the season was held as the light began to fade, with many drivers feeling the need to use their bright rain light. Philippe had to diced with Matthew Parry in the final few laps and on the very last tour, Philippe pulled a brave move to take 10th place away from Parry.

 

Philippe kept the car out of trouble all weekend and the car will now be used by Chrissy Palmer at the Formula Ford Festival at Brands Hatch on the 15th/16th of October. Philippe will compete in the newly re-built Ray he used in 2010. Also joining the Enigma Motorsport team is Neil Tofts, competing in the Zetec class.

 

Report by Aaron Woods

 

 

 

26th September 2011

Difficult Donington for Layac and Enigma

The Enigma team travelled to Donington Park near Derby for Rounds 19, 20 and 21 of the Dunlop MSA Formula Ford Championship of Great Britain. Philippe missed Thursdays test in order to prepare for his debut in the MRF Formula 1600 championship that will support the inaugural Indian Formula 1 Grand Prix. In the first two sessions team boss Linton Stutely gave the Mygale SJ10 a run to ensure the car was ready for qualifying, in session three he gave Enigma's newly built Ray chassis a shakedown with successful results.

 

In Saturday’s qualifying session Philippe used the early laps to re-acquaint himself with the circuit and progressively increased his pace as he learnt the additional GP loop of Donington that he had never driven before. Once comfortable Philippe pushed and managed 9th, 1.3seconds off pole sitter Scott Malvern. Philippe lost out in the early laps of race one after getting squeezed at the start and was down to 13th by lap 2, but later battled with JTR's Tristan Mingay and Australian Spike Goddard to bring the Enigma run Mygale home in 10th.

 

Race 2 and Philippe started 8th but held 10th for most of the race as he fought against Dutch guest runner Steijn Schothorst until the 18 minutes was up. Rain had been a presence all of Sunday but didn’t cause problems until an hour before Race 3 where teams began to change their slicks for wet tyres and preparing for a very wet race. Philippe began round 21 in 12th place, looking to charge through the pack as they struggled to find traction. For the first half of the race the Enigma driver hunted down Jamun’s Spike Goddard and passed him by lap 7. Next to close down was Luke Williams who Philippe passed with just 2 laps to go, once again finishing in 10th place.

 

The Enigma Motorsport outfit look to go well at Silverstone in 2 weeks time using the new Arena layout.

 

Report by Aaron Woods

 

 

 

5th September 2011

Big crowd watches Enigma drivers race well

British Formula Ford resumed again this weekend into front of a big crowd at Brands Hatch with the series playing support to the DTM championship. Enigma Motorsport took to the track with two cars, team boss and driver coach Linton Stutely partnering regular driver Philippe Layac. It was a return to racing for Linton who has not raced since 2009.

 

In a qualifying session where 0.9 seconds covered the top 13 cars, Philippe posted the 11th fastest time and Linton 12th leaving some room for improvement.

 

The pair drove well in race 1 on Saturday with Philippe finishing 6th and Linton later claiming 7th after the exclusion of Fluid Motorsport's Matt Parry for overtaking under yellow flags.

 

Race 2 on Sunday didn't quite go to plan for Linton as he ended up in the gravel trap at Clark curve after 8 laps of the race, after an unfortunate incident involving the Jamun Racing car of Nick McBride when his engine cut out just as Linton was on his tail pitching the Enigma car into retirement. Philippe went on to claim 9th place and more crucial points in the championship.

 

In a disappointing end to the weekend both cars did not finish race 3. Linton made a small mistake heading into the difficult Paddock Hill Bend and spun off into the gravel with no chance of rejoining the race. Philippe's race would also come to a premature finish when he clashed with the car of Neil Alberico after 8 laps sending the Frenchman into retirement. However, he still keeps hold of 7th place in the championship.

 

The next race for the boys will be at the end of this month as they head to Donington Park in Leicestershire. To find out more about tickets for the event please click here.

 

 

 

10th July 2011

Tricky weekend at legendary circuit for Enigma

Enigma Motorsport and driver Philippe Layac headed to Belgium last weekend for round 2 of Formula Ford Eurocup at the legendary circuit of Spa-Francorchamps. The 4.3 mile long circuit held three races for the drivers and with Philippe qualifying in 9th place, the weekend looked promising for some strong finishes.

 

Race 1 went well with Layac finishing in 8th place, he then backed that up with a 10th place finish in the early morning race on Saturday. However, in his eagerness to make a good start in the final race, Philippe made a jump start. He was issued with a drive-through penalty, but due to the wide nature of the F1 pit straight he did'nt see the team informing him of it, so was black flagged and disqualified. It was a bitter end to a strong weekend for the boys, but they will be sure to bounce back next out.

 

Enigma and Philippe have elected to skip the next round of the Eurocup at Zolder to concentrate on their main Formula Ford campaign, which re-commences at Zandvoort in Holland during the F3 Masters weekend of 12/14 August in front of a packed crowd. Philippe knows the circuit well having competed there the week previous to Spa in a Dutch championship race.

 

 

 

20th June 2011

Solid points haul in difficult conditions at Brands Hatch

The fourth round of the MSA Formula Ford Championship of Great Britain took place on the legendary Brands Hatch GP circuit incorporated the first races of the 2011 Formula Ford Eurocup, meaning a huge grid of 26 cars from across Europe took to the Kent track.

 

To add to the spice two of the weekend's races were red-flagged and restarted due to heavy rain, meaning a change of tyres in the pits by the Enigma Motorsport team during the downpour.

 

Philippe Layac, qualified in a creditable 9th position, but never looked back during the races. In the first of two races held on Saturday and with that rain stoppage, Philippe finished in 6th place. He then backed up his good form with an 8th place finish in a dry race 2.

 

In the lone race on Sunday, Layac finished in an impressive 5th place; made all the more sweeter from racing in very wet conditions. Unbelievably the race was red-flagged like on Saturday, and with the restarted race contested over a 2-lap sprint to the chequered flag.

 

Philippe is now up to 7th place in the championship as the British Formula Ford championship takes a summer break. Although there will be no rest for the Enigma boys as they will be contesting the next two Formula Ford Eurocup races during back to back weekends at Spa-Francorchamps and Zolder, both in Belgium. Stay tuned to our website and our Facebook page for more details as they happen.

 

 

 

17th May 2011

Layac back on form at Snetterton

As the third round of the Dunlop MSA Formula Ford Championship of Great Britain got underway last weekend, the phrase ‘third time’s a charm’ seemed to echo in Philippe Layac’s mind.

 

After suffering bad luck at each of the first two rounds of the season, Snetterton finally saw a change, as the weekend got off to a strong start.

 

Qualifying and another trio of races were on the cards for the Enigma Motorsport driver, with Saturday kicking off proceedings in style. Despite suffering from a busy track during the qualifying session, Philippe fought his way through the traffic to secure the sixth fastest time for the opening race.

 

The first race saw Philippe progress up the order to fifth place, which he secured for much of the 18 minute duration. However, after receiving a tap from a rival, he soon found himself back in sixth place, which he held until the chequered flag. A top six finish teamed with running as third fastest in the race made for a good first outing of the weekend. With fate determined not to make things too easy for Philippe, race two was more of a challenge. The Frenchman was forced to really fight for his position, as his surrounding rivals piled on the pressure.

 

A struggle soon came Philippe’s way, as he grappled through brake issues to eventually secure a ninth place finish. Another top ten finish was rewarded with another points haul, as he strived to strengthen his championship ambition.

 

The final race of the day saw Philippe’s weekend end in flames, however not before a fight. A frantic fight with Jake Cook throughout the race saw Philippe eventually secure fifth place, until his car set on fire and forced him into retirement.

 

A knock from a rival earlier in the race was to blame for the fiery end to his venture. Luckily Philippe escaped unscathed and has a positive feeling looking back over the weekend. “The global feeling over the meeting is positive as we went back to where we belong in qualifying and we went even quicker in the race.

 

“We have major updates coming for the next rounds. I can't wait to be back in action and show what we're worth away from bad luck and little incidents,” he added.

 

Philippe is next on track over the weekend of 18-19th June, at Brands Hatch in Kent.

 

Report by Leanne Fahy - www.theracewire.com

 

 

 

27th April 2011

Layac strengthens championship charge

The second round of the Dunlop MSA Formula Ford Championship of Great Britain saw Philippe Layac and the Enigma Motorsport team roll into Oulton Park for another three race assault.

 

After getting to grips with a new car last time out at Silverstone, Philippe was ready for the challenge at the Cheshire circuit. Sadly, as with Silverstone, gearbox issues plagued the Frenchman once again. As a result he was forced to start towards the back of the grid for race one, but this failed to hinder his progress.

 

Despite starting on the back foot, Philippe stormed through the field, picking off his rivals one by one. He fought his way into the top 10, with a ninth place finish.

 

Armed with a repaired gearbox for the second assault of the weekend, Philippe lined up on the grid. Again with a slightly challenging task at hand, he battled his way up to sixth place where he found himself behind the championship leader. Despite proving to be faster than the latter, he was unable to sneak though, and so picked up another strong points finish in sixth.

 

The third and final race of the weekend saw drama strike. After running in seventh place for much of the duration Philippe soon found himself in the gravel trap at Lodge corner (the final turn). After a collision with a rival forced him off of the track, Philippe’s day ended earlier than planned, with a red flag ending the race shortly afterwards.

 

Two strong finishes saw Philippe leave Oulton Park with something positive to reflect on. Looking back over the weekend he said: “Our weekend was good in terms of performance, but as at Silverstone we were unlucky! Although I went out I posted the second quickest lap time in race three, almost as quick as Scott Malvern (three race winner) and quicker than anyone else.

 

We can tell the potential is more than there, which I'm really pleased with, but we have to be patient. Despite our problems though we arrived at Oulton tenth in the championship and we left in eighth place. I’m really looking forward to Snetterton as we did some very good testing there earlier in the year.”

 

The third round of the championship is at Snetterton in Norfolk, over the weekend of 14-15th May, where Philippe will be keen to expand on his title charge.

 

Report by Leanne Fahy - www.theracewire.com

 

 

 

11th April 2011

Highs & low as season gets underway

As a brand new season of motor racing sets in, Philippe Layac returns to the Dunlop MSA Formula Ford Championship of Great Britain for another full season assault with Enigma Motorsport outfit for a new challenge.

 

A busy pre-season regime lead to the first round of the season at Silverstone last weekend, with a triple race outing headlining the event. The weekend began with pre-race practice during Friday, before the thrill of qualifying took hold on Saturday morning. A spot of bad luck struck Philippe during qualifying, however he was upbeat about the imposing opening race that afternoon. Determined not to be affected by starting further back than planned on the grid the Frenchman made up ground in the opening outing, leaving him hungry for more in race two.

 

As the second race approached on Sunday, it was time for Philippe to taste success. Despite starting from 16th on the grid, Philippe was fired up and eager for a strong finish. After battling his way through the field and avoiding others’ accidents, he passed the chequered flag in a very strong fourth place finish.

 

Sunday afternoon saw the final race of the weekend for the British Formula Ford squad. Philippe took his place on the grid for the final time, again being forced to start further back than he intended due to car problems in qualifying. Unfazed by the scenario, he fought his way through the pack, swapping positions near the sharp end of the top ten for much of the battle. Sadly, an abrupt end soon came Philippe’s way, when the close racing caused damage to his single-seater race car. Unable to continue he was forced into retirement within touching distance from the final chequered flag.

 

Looking back over his 2011 inaugural race weekend, Philippe said: “The whole weekend was tough, but it was pure bad luck. The second race went very well as I finished fourth. But the car was doing very well in the third race as well until we got caught.” Looking ahead, he added: “I’m pretty sure we’ll be a lot stronger for Oulton Park, so wait and see.”

 

Philippe and Enigma Motorsport will next be out in full racing action over the Easter weekend, with the infamous Oulton Park (Cheshire) extravaganza, as the series’ entertains the crowds beside the British F3 and British GT championships.

 

Report by Leanne Fahy - www.theracewire.com

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