Stamford racing driver Ed Thurston saw his hopes of a top-three finish snap at Oulton Park on Bank Holiday Monday.
The 18 year-old went into the prestigious Gold Cup meeting in fourth place in the 60-car HSCC Historic Formula Ford Championship and with three meetings still to go he had high hopes of progressing further.
But his season ended prematurely when the crankshaft in the engine of his 1971 Elden car snapped during qualification and punched a fist-sized hole in the side of the motor.
The other top competitors in his class have access to spare engines but Thurston’s shoestring budget means that not only does he not have a spare motor but he can’t afford to salvage the remains of the engine he has.
He said: “I am gutted. At Oulton the car was so sorted, I was flying, feeling good enough for a win.
“This has changed everything. We had just enough money saved for the last couple of meetings but rebuilding the engine in order to continue would use all this and more, and without a motor we can’t race. It’s catch 22.
“Reluctantly we have decided to park the car for the rest of this year, look for some sponsors and hopefully come back strongly for the 2019 championship.”