“If I can prove myself, there may be some big opportunities ahead!” – Cognition Land & Water with CCK’s Charles Rainford discusses his 2024 PCCGB campaign and plans for the future

East Sussex-based Cognition Land & Water with CCK returns to the Porsche Carrera Cup GB with a two-car entry for the 2024 season. Charles Rainford, son of team owner Shaun Rainford, will embark on his fourth season in the UK’s premier one-make GT racing series and will drive alongside teammate Richard Hosking who will pilot the team’s Am class entry. Hosking, founder of team sponsor Cognition Land & Water, is returning to motorsport after a 30-year hiatus.

The team recently launched their 2024 campaign with a presentation at Porsche Centre Tonbridge who are sponsoring the squad.

Charles Rainford moved up to the Porsche Carrera Cup GB in 2021 after many years of success in historic racing. Rainford finished 3rd in the PCCGB Pro-Am class in his debut season and won the class in 2022 after scoring 12 class victories and an overall win in the final race of the season.

Photo: CCK Motorsport

Graduating to the Pro class in 2023, Charles took one overall victory and two further overall podiums on his way to finishing 4th in the Pro class standings. For the 2024 season the team has acquired the latest generation Type 992 car to compliment its existing 911 GT3 entry which will be piloted by Richard Hosking.

Enduranceand GT editor Andy Lloyd caught up with Charles Rainford at the team’s season launch to discuss how the young driver planned his career path into GT racing and his plans for the future.

(EGT): Charles, first of all, the very best of luck for the new season. Why have you chosen to go down the route of Porsche Carrera Cup and not, like many other drivers, started in GT4?

(CR): “I was working regularly at Brands Hatch and Barry Osbourne, who was an instructor, suggested I get into modern racing. I discussed this with my dad and we thought it would be a good thing to get into modern cars as well as it would broaden the business structure for CCK.

“Our budget didn’t allow us to buy me a seat in a GT4 car so we went to Brands Hatch to look at the Ginetta Supercup and Porsche Carrera Cup. We were standing in the pitlane as the Porsches came through and just from their looks and sound, we knew we had to go Porsche racing! We managed somehow to get the finance on the car and I do owe a lot to my dad because if it wasn’t for him, I wouldn’t have got the first chance and without that, it would have been virtually impossible for me to start developing a career as a driver.”

Photo: CCK Historic / Gun Hill Studios

How have your Porsche Carrera Cup campaigns changed CCK?

“I was pleased to be quick in the car as it has also moved the company on and opened new directions for us. We delighted to have Richard (Hosking) on board now so it’s an incredibly exciting time for the business and also for myself.”

You’ve mentioned previously that you would like to emulate the career of Porsche factory driver Kévin Estre. Is the route of factory driver how you would like your career to develop?

“That is the plan. The Porsche pyramid exists and the next logical step would be Porsche Supercup but that is too expensive and I know I can’t do that. I’ve got to somehow jump straight from where I am now to a seat in a GT3 car. How I do that, I don’t know yet.

 “I’ve got some good opportunities this year to race with a different brand in a very prestigious GT3 race so that’s the next goal. If I do well, I might go back to Porsche again.

“If I can prove myself, there may be some big opportunities. For the last few years, I’ve engineered my own race car and that bridges a real gap between me and the team and enables me to talk to engineers on a different level. If I can do that with a GT3 team, that could lead to a lot of opportunities.”

Rounds 1 and 2 of the 2024 Porsche Carrera Cup Great Britain take place at Donington Park on April the 27th and 28th. EnduranceandGT wishes Richard Hosking, Charles Rainford and all at Cognition Land & Water CCK the best of luck for the new season.