Ben Jelf last weekend competed in the second round of the 2024 British Powerboat Championships. The F1H2O Driver took the opportunity to return to the GT30 class as a guest driver for Tintorera Racing to put the newly designed hull through its paces amongst the competitive pack of racers.

Competing against nine of the UK’s Top GT30 drivers Ben knew the competition would be tough and he would have to adapt his style of racing back to the class he had not raced in since 2018 when he made the move into the catamaran type of hull that he races in now.

The Tintorera Racing hull has been designed by racer Stuart Atlee and built in Kent to include new safety features implemented by the UIM, the sport’s governing body to offer more protection to the drivers in the cockpit area whilst racing.

Round two of the British Championship was hosted at Ben’s home Powerboat racing venue Stewartby Powerboat Club in Bedford. The competition would consist of qualifying, followed by four heats of racing in which the drivers would all fight to become the winner of the Bedford Grand Prix.

Heading into qualifying Ben was eager to get going to see what the boat was capable of in his first outing in the new hull. Making the most of the time on the water to get to grips with the boat Ben qualified in third place just two thirds of a second behind pole sitter Mason Jessup before heading into the first heat.

From racing against the clock and finding the perfect lap Ben was now faced with going head-to-head in the first heat. As the ten competitors line up on the pontoon for the race start. As the lights went out the fleet powered away from the start and Ben rounded the first turn in third place. Ben held third place to the chequered flag and was set to fight for further positions in the following three heats.

A repeat performance in heat two and three saw Ben on track for a podium finish with just one heat to go! Heat four saw Ben take the win and walk home with the first piece of silverware for the new boat.

On the opportunity Ben had this to say “This has been a real project of passion for Stuart and the Tintorera Racing Team, so to be asked to drive the boat for them is a real honour. Development began before Covid, so it is great to see the project finished and to bring home the first of many pieces of silverware I know this boat is capable of.”

He continued “I really enjoyed getting back in a GT30. To be fair I just love racing so any opportunity is great training for me. Both Stuart and I have taken a lot away from the weekend and now we look at becoming faster for the next race in a few weeks and hopefully a higher podium finish.”

With Ben not back in the F1H2O series until October now he will compete at the British Sprint Championships on the 3rd-4th August for Tintorera Racing.

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