The Ginetta Junior Championship is again to see controversy this season after a Championship Bulletin issued to the participating teams yesterday confirmed the suspension from all Ginetta one-make series and Championships of JHR Developments ‘pending a further investigation into the conduct of JHR Developments and their employees.’
The issue surrounds allegations, and counter allegations of engine discrepancies with several cars, an issue that saw current Championship leader Sebastian Priaulx, plus fellow JHR customers Harry Dyson and Matt Luff excluded from the results of the Thruxton meeting in May before being reinstated on appeal to the MSA.
Ginetta make clear in their statement that they intend to conduct their own investigation despite the findings of the MSA National Court, that the issue surrounds the team and not their drivers (who will be supported in finding an alternative service provider for the remainder of the year).
JHR Developments did not respond to requests from DSC for comment this afternoon.
The Ginetta Championship Bulletin – in full – reads as follows:
Ginetta is proud to host five of the most competitive and exciting single-make championships in the UK. Nurturing driving talent from their first race and developing their career into international prototype racing, through our motorsport ladder makes the Ginetta championships attractive to competitors of all ages and levels.
Central to our attraction is the integrity and rigour Ginetta exerts in ensuring our grids offer a safe and level-playing field to drivers to genuinely test their race craft.
Safeguarding the good sportsmanship that underpins our Championships is therefore our top priority. We take all allegations of foul-play extremely seriously and have extensive sporting regulations in place to prevent this.
As you will be aware, discrepancies were recently identified in the cars of three of our Championship drivers, all of whom were supported by the team JHR Developments. Ginetta immediately took action in line with our regulations, however, these were later appealed and overturned by the MSA National Court.
Whilst we acknowledge the findings of the MSA and will be further strengthening our policies and regulations going forward, we do not feel the MSA National Court’s findings were sufficiently comprehensive in regards to the conduct of the team in question.
Ginetta is therefore suspending JHR Developments’ participation in our championships, pending a further investigation into the conduct of JHR Developments and their employees. The investigation will consider whether their actions met our regulatory standards of fairness and were in accord with the principles of good sportsmanship.
Drivers place great trust in the teams who support them. We believe that allowing JHR Developments to continue participating in our Championship for the remainder of the season, during the investigation, would unfairly reflect onto their drivers and unreasonably bring into question the veracity of their results.
As this investigation relates purely to the conduct of the team in question, the drivers of JHR Developments supported cars will not be subject to any further investigation. We are satisfied that all drivers acted in good faith.
The investigation into JHR Developments is unlikely to be concluded until after the completion of the 2017 season. In the interests of the successful conclusion of the 2017 championships and given the sincerity of the drivers involved, Ginetta has decided the results of the JHR Developments investigation will not have a retrospective impact.
The points and standing of the drivers will therefore be honoured and unaffected by the decision to investigate JHR Developments’ conduct further.
Ginetta is committed to supporting our customers and will assist the six Ginetta Junior drivers and two SuperCup drivers in moving to one of our recognised teams for the remainder of the season.
Following the conclusion of Ginetta’s investigation, depending on the outcome, JHR Developments will be informed whether they can support our drivers in future Championships.