An Epping racing driver kicked off his 2017 BRSCC Fiesta Junior Championship campaign at Brands Hatch and managed to finish fifth in his second race of the day.

Lochlan Bearman produced some slick and rapid overtaking moves at the Kent circuit to ensure he finished higher up in the points ranking and matched the top two drivers’ lap times despite being two cars behind.

Running with the established JamSport, the championship-winning team from last season, for the first time, the 15-year-old was consistently one of the fastest in the practice sessions.

And in qualifying Bearman managed fourth place with the top five only separated by a tenth of a second.

Unfortunately for the driver, he could only finish ninth in the first race as he was struggling with handling issues in the car.

It looked briefly like Bearman might not finish the race at all as towards the end, Gus Burton made an optimistic move going into the Clearways Corner and collected his rival which caused them both to spin out. However, Bearman recovered well to finish inside the top 10.

The team ensured the car was able to get on the grid in time for the second race and the Epping racer was able to capitalise on two small gains to move up the grid and finish a credible fifth.

Bearman said: “I was disappointed in qualifying as I really wanted pole and in the window of optimum tyre performance I encountered traffic so I knew I could have gone quicker. I missed pole by 8/100 of a second.

“To be honest, I am disappointed with the result. I really came expecting to compete for the win and be on the podium. If we had started race two from fifth then I think that would have been achievable.

“However, we have shown we can be fast so I will take the positives and now focus on the next race at Cadwell Park on Saturday, May 7.”