Matty will carry a slender five point leader into the final two races of the BRDC F4 Winter Series after a solid days racing on day one at Brands Hatch.

Taking place around the 1.2 mile Indy circuit, Matty arrived with a mere two point lead after a an up and down opening meeting at Snetterton two weeks ago.

The 17 year old however was in confident mood, after setting competitive times in pre event testing and having a strong track record around the Kent track.

The day’s action got off to a great start in a frantic, early morning, qualifying session.  In cold conditions, Graham started steady before turning up the wick and building pace into his efforts.

An initial lap in the 56 second bracket was eventually trimmed down to a 45.721, a mere 0.069 seconds shy of the pole, before the session was red flagged four minutes early, thanks to two cars stranded in the gravel at Paddock Hill bend.

Whilst this may have cost Matty pole, (he was on a fastest lap of anyone as the red flags were thrown), starting from the outside of the track on P2, gave him what he considered to be the optimum line for the start.

He explained: “By being on the left, I can angle the car towards the apex of Paddock Hill.  The track is angled here which will give me a downhill run which should give me an advantage if I can get a clean start”

As the race got underway, Matty did make a fine start and as predicted, was able to get a run on pole sitter Will Palmer as the field charged towards turn one.

However, with low ambient temperatures preventing the tyres from providing optimum grip off the line and the short distance between start line and first corner, Matty decided to back out of the move and drop back into second place.

On a track notoriously difficult to overtake, he then spent the remainder of the 25 laps firmly in the slipstream of the leader, but unable to mount a safe, clean pass.

Race two in the afternoon provided more of the same.  Starting from fourth place, by virtue of setting the fourth fastest race lap in the morning Matty made another lightening start. He was challenging for second heading into the first corner, having jumped third placed Palmer and getting alongside series debutant Kieran Vernon.

As he looked to complete the pass, Matty found himself out of position, unable to get round Vernon and then forced to yield third to nearest championship rival Jake Cook, completing the opening tour in his starting fourth place.

Despite keeping pace with third placed Cook and second placed Vernon, Matty was unable to make any headway and with an eye turning towards the overall championship, refrained from making a hero to zero lunge for the podium spots just ahead.

Speaking at the end of the day, Graham was pleased with his Saturday showing. He said; “It’s been a good day, we’ve scored some consistent points and are still leading the championship.”

“I made two good starts, but the cold temperatures made it a bit twitchy and I wasn’t able to convert those into gained places.  I didn’t lose any places thought so overall I am happy”

With a second qualifying session and two races to run on Sunday, Graham remains confident of being able to secure the series crown.

“Qualifying is everything around this track, with very few opportunities to overtake so hopefully we can get a front row starting spot for tomorrow and try to control the pace from the front.”

He continued: “The pace has been fairly evenly matched between us all so far, and I’m fairly confident we can get another win tomorrow”