Matt Neal, Josh Cook & Adam Morgan triumph at sun-baked Thruxton

The Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship produced another memorable weekend (May 19/20) of racing as Matt Neal, Josh Cook and Adam Morgan stormed to victory at a sun-baked Thruxton.

Marking the third stop on the calendar for the series, following visits to Brands Hatch and Donington Park, the high-speed Hampshire venue proved to be a different challenge altogether for teams and drivers.

Qualifying proved to be a scorching affair as Halfords Yuasa Racing’s Neal stormed to his second pole position at the Hampshire venue in as many years, setting a new lap record along the way. Piloting his Honda Civic Type R to a best time of 1:15.612, the triple champion was joined at the top of the times by Colin Turkington, Brett Smith, Dan Cammish and Senna Proctor.

The wave of young taking it to the established names were hot on the heels of the former champions however with Brett Smith and Dan Cammish, both in Honda’s, locked out the second row of the grid.

With a bumper crowd soaking up the searing temperatures on race day, the opening 16-lap encounter proved to be a tense affair as Neal converted his pole position into a lights-to-flag victory. Launching off the front row, Neal held off the advances of Turkington as the field stream into the Complex for the first time.

Holding top spot, Neal began to get his head down and build up a gap to the chasing Turkington, who was unable to make any inroads into the 51-year-old’s lead. Further behind Cammish held off a charging Andrew Jordan, who ultimately succumbed to the chasing pack, with Sam Tordoff dispatching him.

Neal ultimately went on to clinch victory to become the sixth different winner of the season, with Turkington and Cammish rounding off the rostrum.

Race two proved to be all about Power Maxed Racing’s Cook, who produced a sensational drive to notch his second win of the year. Starting ninth and carrying minimal success ballast, the star of Donington Park showcased his talents once again as he scythed his way through the field.

Latching himself onto the back of the top five within a matter of laps, Cook’s march to the front continued as he threaded his way past Tordoff and Neal, pulling a bold move around the outside of the latter heading into the final chicane.

Soon hot on the heels of Turkington, Cook pulled off a near identical move on the BMW to take the lead, with raptures of applause breaking out on the bankings of his home circuit. Stretching his lead in the closing stages, the Vauxhall Astra driver held his nerve to score his second win in as many events, with Turkington and Neal finishing second and third.

For the reverse grid encounter, Adam Morgan was drawn onto pole position and the Mercedes Benz A-Class driver took full advantage on a circuit which has been a happy hunting ground for him in the past.

Blasting off the line, the Ciceley Motorsport racer commanded proceeding’s as he led from lights-to-flag, starving off an early challenge from Senna Proctor. As Morgan made his escape, the real mover to watch was WIX Racing with Eurotech’s Jack Goff. Starting eighth, the Honda driver had strong pace and wasted little time in fighting his way towards the front.

Despite not being able to do anything about the formidable Morgan, who made it back-to-back race three wins, Goff ended the day with a second place with Proctor gave Power Maxed Racing even more to celebrate in third.

Virtue of his second win of the year, Morgan has now moved to the championship summit, holding a slender one-point lead over Josh Cook, whilst Tom Ingram is a further ten back.

For the full classification of results from all three races, click here.

The 2018 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship resumes on June 9/10, with rounds 10, 11 and 12 taking place at Oulton Park.

Fun in the sun at record-breaking Thruxton thriller

Thousands of fans have lapped up the high-octane thrills on a record-breaking Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) weekend at Thruxton, as the fastest drivers in the country put on a spellbinding show for the capacity crowds.

The UK’s leading motor sport series is always a major draw, and this year, record numbers of fans chose to eschew the Royal Wedding and FA Cup Final to flock to Britain’s quickest circuit.

They were repaid with interest, witnessing 12 absorbing races, headlined by the attention-grabbing BTCC but also comprising the Renault UK Clio Cup, F4 British Championship, Protyre Motorsport Ginetta GT5 Challenge and Ginetta Junior Championship.

A sun-kissed weekend saw victories for Matt Neal, home hero Josh Cook and Adam Morgan, whose race three triumph earned the Ciceley Motorsport star the championship lead. Two-time title-holder Colin Turkington made history in the first race as he broke a lap record that had held firm since 2002 – the longest-standing benchmark in the BTCC – before it was further lowered by a charging Tom Ingram in the day’s finale.

The popular Chicane grandstands and spectator banks around the circuit were filled with enthusiastic fans, while the new, £2 million state-of-the-art Thruxton Centre – due to be officially opened by motor sport legends Murray Walker and Nigel Mansell during Thruxton’s 50th Anniversary Celebration in a fortnight’s time (2/3 June) – received a rapturous reception, with the first guests soaking up both the sunshine and the action from the panoramic balcony.

“What a brilliant weekend!” enthused Thruxton Group Managing Director, Bill Coombs. “It’s obviously extremely satisfying to welcome another record crowd, which is testament to the enduring appeal of the BTCC and the first-class entertainment that Thruxton invariably produces – and with wonderful weather and some sensational racing, they all went home with smiles on their faces, which is great to see.

“The packed spectator banks looked fabulous in the sunshine, and the action was phenomenal across the board, from the young guns in Ginetta Juniors up to Britain’s biggest motor sport stars in the BTCC.

“Thruxton always generates superb slipstreaming scraps and close, competitive racing, and with battles throughout the field, there was something to catch the eye wherever you looked.

“Congratulations also to Tom and Colin for their lap record-breaking pace. To lower a benchmark that had gone unchallenged for 16 years – and on such a hot day, too – was quite an achievement.

“It was fantastic, finally, to see the new Thruxton Centre open for business for the first time, and the feedback we received has been universally positive, which is very gratifying. In building this facility, we were keen to really raise the bar and there is no question that it sets the tone for the circuit’s future. We now look forward to its official inauguration with Murray and Nigel at our 50th Anniversary Celebration.”

Thruxton’s Anniversary weekend will feature 15 races, high-speed demonstrations from Williams’ 1983 FW08C amongst other iconic racing cars and bikes, a static display of Mansell’s all-conquering, title-winning Williams FW14B, world-famous British Army parachute team the Red Devils, car club reunions, a funfair, live music, overnight camping and a fireworks display in evidence of the festival’s family-friendly appeal.

Advance tickets for Thruxton’s 50th Anniversary Celebration are available from just £12 for Saturday entry and £15 for Sunday – or £24 for both days. Sunday grandstand seats are an additional £5. Accompanied children aged 15 and under will be admitted free of charge.

Prizes confirmed for BSKC 2018 National Final

The British Schools Karting Championship have confirmed another bumper set of prizes for the most successful teams and drivers competing in the 2018 National Final, staged at Whilton Mill on June 30.

Following a host of regional finals, spanning the length and breadth of the UK, a total of 26 teams are set to battle it out for supremacy in what is set to be a highly competitive event.

Ten races stand between a variety of schools and colleges and their respective students from walking away with what could be argued as the biggest set of prizes that have been on offer for winning the championship.

The three students from the winning team and one representing adult will be given the opportunity to enjoy a Heritage Tour of the Williams Grand Prix Collection. Touring the state-of-the-art, multi-million pound Grand Prix Collection, the winners will be able to walk around the interactive museum that houses around 40 Williams Formula One cars dating from 1978 onwards.

Seminal race cars that carried World Champions such as Alan Jones, Keke Rosberg, Nelson Piquet, Nigel Mansell, Alain Prost, Damon Hill and Jacques Villeneuve to victory over three decades of racing are all on display.

Ginetta Cars will also offer the entry onto the prestigious 2019 Ginetta Junior Scholarship for the highest placed competition licence holder [whose date of birth falls between 1st January 2003 and 21st March 2005, and who has not previously competed in an MSA circuit car race].

Giving them the opportunity to battle for free entry onto the 2019 Ginetta Junior Championship grid, the prize is one that can spring board any junior race onto great things.

Super Green Racing’s Howard and Ben Green will also continue their support of the BSKC by offering a pair of tickets to an event that Ben competes at later in the year. Now riding high in the British GT Championship, Green is a former winner of the event having triumphed with Debden Park High School in 2014.

For more information on the BSKC and how you can get involved in 2019, head to www.bskc.co.uk to find out more.

TOCA support championships geared up for Thruxton thriller

The high-speed demands of Thruxton Circuit await the TOCA support championships this weekend (Mat 19/20) for the third event of the 2018 season.

Having already visited Brands Hatch and Donington Park, four categories will do battle at the Hampshire venue, with the Michelin Ginetta GT4 Supercup and Porsche Carrera Cup GB not making the journey.

The Renault UK Clio Cup has descended on Thruxton however and is set to serve up another memorable two races. So far this year Paul Rivett, Max Coates and James Dorlin have all won races, the latter scoring two last time out.

With Coates holding a slender lead in the championship standings entering rounds five and six, all eyes will be transfixed on the one-make tin top series to see who will grab the initiative. Dorlin scored a popular maiden win at the corresponding event last year and is riding high, hoping to continue his recent run of success.

Throw into the mix Daniel Rowbottom, Jack McCarthy, Bradley Burns, James Colburn and Dan Zelos, to name just a few, and picking a winner in the Clio Cup has never been tougher.

Teenage kicks will come from the Ginetta Junior Championship, which is open to drivers aged 14 to 17-years-old. Luke Browning heads into the weekend as series leader after picking up a pair of wins at Donington Park, however the chasing pack have him on their radars.

Adam Smalley and Louis Foster have both also won races this season and with two more wins up for grabs this weekend, they’ll be keen to add to their silverware collections. Ruben Del Sarte, Finley Green and Patrick Kibble have made waves this season too and will be looking to take the next step towards the front runners too.

Further Ginetta action will come from the Protyre Motorsport Ginetta GT5 Challenge, which makes its first appearance on the TOCA package this season. Traditionally competing alongside the British GT Championship, the one-make category joins the fray with a captivating title battle unfolding.

James Kellett has momentum on his side as he arrives as the point’s leader, virtue of his two wins at Rockingham. Additional podiums at Oulton Park leave the former champion in the prime position to add another crown this year, and this weekend could be pivotal in doing that. Behind him, Geri Nicosia will be one to watch, as will Alex Toth-Jones, Morgan Quinn, Charlie Digby and Connor O’Brien.

Capping off the action will be the traditional single seater thrills from the British F4 Championship. Set to dazzle fans with another trio of races around the iconic circuit, Ayrton Simmons will look to extend his advantage in the championship battle.

Sebastian Priaulx, Kiern Jewiss and Johnathan Hoggard lead the charge of the chasing pack and can’t be discounted either.

BTCC battle speeds into ultra-fast Thruxton

The Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship descends on the home of the British Automobile Racing Club, Thruxton Circuit, for the third event of what is shaping up to be a season to remember this weekend (May 19/20).

Celebrating the BTCC’s 60th anniversary this year, the championship has produced six blockbuster races across Brands Hatch and Donington Park, with somewhat of a changing of the guard taking place as a host of young drivers have come to the fore.

It isn’t just the series that is celebrating a milestone year, Thruxton is too as it marks its 50th year in 2018 too. The beloved circuit is set to open parts of its brand-new, industry-leading £2 million hospitality facility – The Thruxton Centre – ahead of a full official opening on Sunday 3 June amid a weekend of 50th Anniversary celebrations.

Speeding into rounds seven, eight and nine, the drivers’ standings has a distinctly familiar feel to those of last year, with Tom Ingram sitting at the summit. Two wins paired with consistent points finishes has handed the Speedworks Motorsport driver a seven-point advantage and he will be keen to extend that at a circuit where the Toyota Avensis has gone well at in the past.

Leading the chase for Ingram and top spot is Donington Park race winner Adam Morgan. Enjoying a solid start to the year, the Ciceley Motorsport driver has been a force to be reckoned and has a prove package around Thruxton, making him a clear contender.

Josh Cook scored a breakthrough win at Donington Park and the local driver will be keen to add further silverware to his collection. The Power Maxed TAG Racing competitor is one of several emerging talents in the BTCC this year and it is hard to discount any of them.

Jack Goff, race winner in round one, and reigning champion Ashley Sutton have been in the thick of the action and round out the top five whilst Aiden Moffat has impressed with two podiums. Factor in his strong pace at Thruxton and the Scotsman can’t be discounted from podium contention either.

Dan Cammish and Chris Smiley will be ones to watch as well, piloting their respective Honda Civic Type R’s. Both picked up their maiden podium finishes last time out and given the track record of the Honda at Thruxton in the past, both will be confident of what they can achieve.

Duo Motorsport with HMS Racing’s Rob Austin is another home hero for fans to cheer on and he, along with Colin Turkington, round out the top ten.

Beyond that, a whole host of race-winning drivers sit on the fringe of spring boarding themselves into front-running contention. Andrew Jordan and Matt Neal have both thrived around the high-speed layout in the past and will be keen to ignite their championship challengers; as will local man Rob Collard, Jason Plato, Motorbase Performance – to name just a few.

With five different winners from six races and a total of 14 drivers have graced the podium so far, the landscape of the BTCC is as unpredictable as it ever has been and that trait is set to continue around Thruxton’s famed 2.356 mile track.

Tickets for the BTCC’s visit on 19-20 May can be purchased on the gate, priced at £16 for Saturday (qualifying) and £33 for Sunday (race day). Saturday grandstand seats are an additional £5. Accompanied children aged 15 and under will be admitted free of charge.

Cook homing in on Thruxton glory as locals tipped to shine

Thruxton is preparing to welcome the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) on 19-20 May, with new race-winner Josh Cook primed as the local driver to watch at the forefront of what is being billed as a ‘changing of the guard’ in Britain’s top motor sport series.

In its 60th anniversary year, the BTCC’s Diamond Jubilee season is already shaping up to become one for the ages as the championship’s perennial favourites go into high-speed battle against the new wave of precocious talents enjoying success in Britain’s premier tin-top series.

It is a ‘revolution’ Cook from Bath finds himself at the heart of after claiming his maiden BTCC pole position and victory behind the wheel of his Power Maxed TAG Racing Vauxhall Astra last time out at Donington Park, in so doing lifting himself to third in the overall Drivers’ standings.

Buoyed by the prospect of following up his landmark weekend with another successful event at the Hampshire speedbowl, as Thruxton is affectionately known, Cook is convinced that local support has the power to carry him further on the crest of his current wave.

“It was fantastic to stand on top of the BTCC podium for the first time in my career and I cannot wait to experience that winning feeling again and again,” the 26-year-old commented. “Thruxton is an exhilarating circuit to race at and nothing would make me happier than to carry our momentum through to another great result. I will be giving it my all and I am sure the vocal home support for me and the team will be worth those extra tenths of a second.”

With the BTCC headlining an action-packed TOCA racing weekend, visitors will get their first proper look at the circuit’s brand new, industry-leading £2 million hospitality facility – The Thruxton Centre – ahead of its official opening by Nigel Mansell and Murray Walker on Sunday, 3 June amid a weekend of 50th Anniversary celebrations.

“I am looking forward to exploring the state-of-the-art Thruxton Centre,” Cook continued. “It is a brilliant new centrepiece for the circuit and one that represents an exciting future for this legendary venue.”

Cook’s burgeoning BTCC success comes as part of an unmistakable ‘youthful charge’ among some of the series’ up-and-coming participants, one that currently sees the top eight drivers in the standings average little more than 25 years of age.

Even so, there remains arguably no substitute for experience and few in the BTCC come as seasoned as fellow local favourite Rob Collard, the Frimley man seeking more silverware at Thruxton after a triumphant performance in front of a bumper crowd at the hugely popular Andover venue 12 months ago.

Competing in his 19th season of BTCC competition, Collard in the factory-backed Team BMW 125i M Sport has demonstrated some of his best form in recent years, finishing in the top five overall in both 2016 and 2017. He will be seeking to replicate his popular 2017 victory this weekend.

Armed with its striking new Civic Type R, Swindon-based Honda UK’s works team, Halfords Yuasa Racing, has enjoyed significant success at Thruxton over the years and is targeting a landmark first win for the latest-generation model with its accomplished driver pairing, BTCC veteran Matt Neal and rookie sensation Dan Cammish.

Fan favourite DUO Motorsport with HMS Racing will also strive for the top step at Thruxton with its all-new Alfa Romeo Giulietta. The Swindon team has re-introduced the iconic Italian marque to the BTCC for its first Thruxton appearance in more than a decade, HMS Racing hoping to hark back to Alfa Romeo’s iconic glory days when the Italian factory squad famously swept to the 1994 BTCC title with Gabriele Tarquini.

The RAF Falcons are additionally confirmed to perform their incredible display during Thruxton’s BTCC race meeting on Sunday, 20 May at approximately 10:15. More information can be found here

Tickets for the BTCC’s visit on 19-20 May can be purchased on the gate, priced at £16 for Saturday (qualifying) and £33 for Sunday (race day). Saturday grandstand seats are an additional £5. Accompanied children aged 15 and under will be admitted free of charge.

C1 Challenge & Pickup Trucks produce mesmerising Rockingham showing

A series of firsts took place at Rockingham this past weekend (May 11/12/13) as the Trade Team Citroen C1 Challenge and Pickup Truck Racing Championship produced non-stop action around the popular Corby venue.

In what proved to be three days of high-octane on-track thrills, the weekend was largely dominated by the C1 Challenge, which staged both three and 24hr endurance races.

The event not only marked the first time that the one-make tin top category had visited Rockingham, but also the inaugural 24hr race the venue had held since its opened its doors in 2001.

Boasting an entry list of more than 50 cars and 200 drivers, action began on Saturday at 17:00 in treacherous conditions as the series roared into life. Following a frenetic opening hour, where positions were being swapped on a regular basis throughout the field, teams and drivers settled into the race as the laps and clock began to tick by.

Following a full days racing, Team C’est La Vie emerged as the victors, finishing two laps ahead of their nearest challengers. James Macintyre-Ure, Robin Welsh, Paul Dickinson, Max Maxted and Chris Chadwick shared driving duties of the #349 machine and were regular front runners, leading a majority of the race.

Second place went the way of Richard Dalton, Louis Tyson and Peter Rundle, running under the Daltonator banner. Leading the race for a couple of hours overnight, the trio were unable to remain at the summit of the standings, dropping to second.

Rounding off the podium after 24 hours was HE Racing, made up of Symon, Hannah, Edward and Harry Cockhill.

Such was the popularity of the 24hr race, an additional three-hour encounter was also run during the weekend for those that were unable to secure a spot in the main event.

Boasting a starting grid of 32 cars, Poorboys Racing emerged as race winners with James Kenyon and Stewart Linn behind the wheel. The duo notched 91 laps overall, winning the race by a single lap ahead of Old Hat Motorsport and Hurricane Motorsport, who finished second and third respectively.

History was also made in the Pickup Truck Racing Championship on Saturday as they made the first of several visits to the Northamptonshire circuit this year. Traditionally competing on the challenging oval layout, the series debuted on the International Super Sports Car Circuit, the same layout used by the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship.

Lea Wood further cemented his status as the man to beat in the series in race one as he stormed to victory. His road to the chequered flag however wasn’t a smooth one as he fought back after dropping to fifth, ultimately threading his way into top spot on lap ten. From there, Wood powered his way to his fourth win of 2018 whilst reigning champion Scott Bourne and Mark Willis rounded off the podium.

In race two, Carl Boardley hit the front to take victory. Dicing with Wood throughout the race, Boardley went on to be in a class of his own as he stretched his legs out front, crossing the line over four seconds ahead of Wood, who further extended his championship lead. Bourne picked up another podium finish in third, albeit more than 20 second behind the race winner.

The Trade Team Citroen C1 Challenge is next in action at Pembrey on June 9/10 whilst the Pickup Truck Racing Championship visits Thruxton on July 7/8.

BARC championships battle contrasting conditions at Brands Hatch

Contrasting conditions welcomed the British Automobile Racing Club to Brands Hatch this past weekend (May 12/13) as a host of championships continued their 2018 campaigns around the Indy layout.

Persistent rain on Saturday was swapped for bright sunshine on Sunday at the Kent venue, adding further spice to what already was proving to be a memorable event.

The Michelin Clio Cup Series had a distinctly familiar feel to it as reigning champion Ben Palmer further asserted his dominance at the top of the standings. Entering the weekend with an unbeaten record, Palmer clinched his fifth and sixth wins of the season, extending his points lead in the process.

In the race class, Nic Harrison’s run of wins came to an end, not before he could score a fifth victory of the season however. The defending champion romped to the chequered flag in race one but could do nothing to stop James Colburn in the second.

The Junior Saloon Car Championship produced its third double-winner of the season around the Indy circuit as Frankie Taylor vaulted himself into title contention. On what was a truncated weekend for the 14 to 17-year-old’s, Taylor held his nerve in two tense but entertaining encounters to score victory.

Podium finishes went the way of Lewis Saunders, Scott McIntyre and Steven Chandler too across both races.

Roaring into life for the first time this season, the BARC Clubmans Sport Prototype Championship in association with King Henry’s Taverns delivered three nail-biting races. Steven Dickens won the opener before Mark Charteris picked up wins in races two and three.

In the 2CV Parts.com Classic Racing Championship, Nick Crispin stormed to a brace of victories in two frenetic races that saw a host of twists and turns along the way.

The BARC South East Tin Tops Championship kicked off the weekend for the Club’s trio of South East Centre categories with Danny Brooker taking victory in race one. At the wheel of his Vauxhall Astra VXR, Brooker narrowly pipped Rikki Taylor whilst Robert Hosier was third. Race two honours went the way of Ford Fiesta driver Taylor.

Malcolm Blackman was in irresistible form once again in the BARC South East Scrapco Avon Intermarque Championship, taking his record to a perfect four wins from four races at Brands Hatch.

Spoils were shared in the BARC South East Quaife Modified Saloon Car Championship, with veteran racer Rod Birley winning the opener at the wheel of his Ford Escort WRC. Birley was unable to replicate his performance later in the day however as Malcolm Wise powered his Ford Escort Cosworth to the top step of the podium.

Rounding out the action was the BARC Saloon Series, Dream Automotive Honda VTEC Challenge and the Classic VW Cup, all of which amalgamated their grids.

Brad Kaylor and Ken Lark took a win apiece in the Classic VW Cup, however a notable performer was Daniel Rose in race two, charging from ninth on the grid to the front within the first lap. Ben Rushworth was the final race winner of the weekend, sweeping to both victories at the wheel of his Honda Integra in the BARC Saloon Series/VTEC Challenge races.

Porsche Carrera Cup GB stars at Monza

The Porsche Carrera Cup GB headed to Italy this past weekend (May 12/13) for rounds five and six of the season, with Dino Zamparelli and George Gamble sharing the spoils, taking a win apiece.

Taking to the iconic Autodromo Nazionale Monza, the 22-car field picked up where they left off at Donington Park late last month, producing a brace of breathtaking races.

Daniel Harper emerged as the man to beat in qualifying as he stormed to the top of the timesheets, ultimately never being beaten to score his maiden pole position.

Starting on the front row at the iconic venue, Harper was unable to convert his pole position into the lead as he dropped back to third at the start. Heading into the first gear chicane looking to regain second place, the Scholarship winner locked the wheels of his JTR machine and made contact with Lewis Plato.

With both cars strewn across the circuit, the incident inevitably triggered a multi-car pile-up, bringing out the safety car. Will Bratt and James Orton also found themselves in strife as they struggled to escarp the carnage.

Profiting from the first corner incident, Redline Racing’s Zamparelli resisted the challenges of Gamble and Tio Ellinas during the mid-point of the race. Beginning to stretch his advantage, Zamparelli was able to pull away from the chasing pack to become the first double winner of the 2018 campaign.

Further back, Ellinas finally broke Gamble’s resolute defence after the latter of the duo locked up heading into the final corner, handing the former second position on a plate. Tom Wrigley also benefited from Gamble’s mistake, securing the final step of the podium.

Despite missing out on the rostrum in race one, Gamble made no mistake in the second encounter of the weekend, taking a memorable victory.

In what was another enthralling battle for supremacy, the Team Parker Racing driver vaulted from third on the grid into the lead, ahead of team-mate Seb Perez and pole-sitter Esmee Hawkey.

Another early pile-up saw the safety car make another appearance but once the debris was clear, fans were treated to a frenetic spectacle.

Holding his lead over Perez at the restart, all eyes were on Ellinas and Zamparelli as they made their move on Hawkey, demoting her down the order. Zamparelli’s charge wasn’t done however as he soon slipped past Ellinas and Perez, moving into second place.

Being caught by the race one winner as the laps ticked by, Gamble ensured he hit his marks, making no mistakes, to go and clinch what was his second win of the season too.

For the full classification of results, click here.

Ten championships head to Brands Hatch for BARC bonanza

The British Automobile Racing Club is set for a blockbuster weekend (May 12/13) of racing at Brands Hatch as a total of ten different championships write the latest chapter in their 2018 campaigns.

The Michelin Clio Cup Series hits the track for the third time this season with reigning champion Ben Palmer firmly in control of the standings. Perfection personified so far, Palmer has won all four races and has shown no signs of letting up in the Race class. Simon Freeman and Ben Colburn are the champion’s nearest challengers and both will be looking to bring his winning run to an end.

In the Road category, Nic Harrison has enjoyed a similar level of dominance and he is also bidding to retain the title he won last year. Four wins from four races leaves James Joannou and Darren Geeraerts needing to fightback in Kent.

Providing a cost effective first step on the motorsport level for drivers aged between 14 to 17-years-old, the Junior Saloon Car Championship is set to dazzle those in attendance over the weekend. Already visiting Silverstone and Rockingham, the one-make tin top category sees Joel Wren leading the way after scoring a dominant double last time out, however Ben Kasperczak, who also netted a pair of wins at the curtain-raiser, is hot on his heels.

Peter Sparrows will look to extend his slender lead in the 2CV Parts.com Championship as the much-loved category heads to Brands Hatch. Emerging as the man to beat at Cadwell Park, Sparrows will look to further cement his status as the early pace setter, with reigning champion Lien Davies and Tom Perry in close proximity.

The BARC Clubmans Sport Prototype Championship in association with King Henry’s Taverns will kick off a five-event season this weekend, with a healthy grid of cars. Front-engined sports racing cars that originated in Britain in 1965, the championship has become a stable of the BARC and this year’s crop of racers are set to put on a memorable show. Notable names to keep an eye on include Barry Webb, Peter Richings and Ben Mallock.

All three of the BARC South Eastern Centre championships will be in action over both days too, with it all to play for after their Easter season-opener. The BARC Modified Saloon Car Championship sees Adrian Bradley and Steve Rothery tied on points at the top of the standings whilst Rikki Taylor holds a slender advantage over Daniel Fisher in the BARC South East Tin Tops Championship. Expect fireworks from both categories as some of the most much-loved saloon cars do battle.

Elsewhere, Malcolm Blackman will be looking to continue his strong start to the year in the Scrapco Metal/Avon Tyres Intermarque Championship. Blackman swept his way to a pair of wins at Brands Hatch last month and is shaping up to be a formidable force at this early stage in the year.

Rounding off the bumper programme of racing around the Indy layout will be the BARC Saloon Series, Honda VTEC Challenge and Classic VW Cup. Amalgamating grids between themselves, this trio of categories have enjoyed a strong start to the 2018 campaign with bumper grids and a diverse range of cars competing.; all of which is set to continue here.

Britcar headlines BARC weekend at Silverstone

A handful of British Automobile Racing Club championships are set to make their mark this weekend (May 12/13) as they head to Silverstone.

Taking to the iconic Grand Prix circuit, four BARC categories will duke it out for supremacy with Britcar Endurance headlining with its vast array of machinery.

More than 35 cars are expected to contest the second event of the season, a 50-minute sprint race which is then later followed by the customary two-hour endurance encounter.

Blending the likes of Ferrari 458 GT3’s and Ginetta G50’s, amongst a host of other jaw-dropping cars, the championship has continued its meteoric rise over the past couple of years, with 2018 no different.

Arriving at the Northamptonshire-based venue, the Sprint category sees a host of drivers in early contention for outright honours. The Mercedes of Richard Neary scored two wins at Rockingham and will likely be a threat again whilst Ferrari duo David Mason and Ross Wylie will be keen to add to their silverware collections. Add into the mix the BMW of Mike Moss and Tom Howard and you begin to build a picture of how competitive this year’s crop of drivers is.

Elsewhere in the Endurance standings, Black Mamba Racing duo Andy Demetriou and Luke Williams will have their sights set on building on what was a dream opening weekend at the wheel of their Ginetta G55.

The APL Health Caterham Graduates Championship resumes during the weekend too after last racing in mid-March at Oulton Park. Another to boast a significant entry list, two 20-minute encounters, with all classes being amalgamated, will be run around Silverstone.

Notable names to look out for include Oliver Gibson, Lee Collins, Declan Dolan and Graeme Smith who lead the Sigmax, Sigma, Mega and Classic classes respectively.

Single seater action comes in the form of the Luna Logistics Classic Formula Ford 1600 Championship, who are making their second visit to Silverstone this year. Bringing together some of the most desirable open-wheeled machines from yesteryear, the championship continues to produce edge-of-the-seat thrills.

Benn Tilley and Mike Gardner shared the spoils the last time the series hit the track and both will be keen to top the podium once again.

The Kumho BMW Championship is also set for action this weekend in what will also be their second event of the season. Roaring into life at Brands Hatch over the on Easter Sunday, the championship has once again attracted a big grid with drivers competing in all manner of models from the popular German manufacturer.

Colin Wells, Ian Crisp, Gareth Montgomery, Kevin Denwood and Russell Dack leading the long list of potential front runners to keep a watchful eye on.

Capping off the racing around the home of British motorsport will be the MSA British Superkarts Championship and Speed Group OSS Championship.

C1 Challenge set to make history at Rockingham with blockbuster 24hr race

The British Automobile Racing Club is set to play its part in a small piece of history at Rockingham this weekend (May 11/12/13) as the Corby circuit gets set to stage its first-ever 24hr race.

Having hosted a wide variety of events since opening in 2001, Rockingham will welcome the Trade Team C1 Challenge for three days of unmissable, wheel-to-wheel action.

Launching in 2017 with just a handful of cars, the C1 Challenge has become a phenomenon in UK motorsport, with grids having grown at a rapid rate. Giving drivers the opportunity to go endurance racing at a low-cost, the series is set for its biggest weekend to date at Rockingham.

A capacity 53-car entry list has been confirmed by organisers with a diverse range of drivers filling the seats across each team. Whilst some o

Notable names taking to the track include FIA World Endurance Championship racer Andy Priaulx, who will share a car with his son Sebastian, Richard Solomans and Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship Series Director Alan Gow.

Recent BTCC race winner Josh Cook, former BTCC stars Anthony Reid and Lea Wood and Jade Edwards are just a handful of the other notable names that are competing. In total, 203 drivers will take to the track over the course of what is set to be a memorable 24hrs of competition.

Given the high demand to race in the 24hr race, an additional three-hour encounter is now also set to run on Saturday, with a capacity 35-car entry list confirmed for that as well.

Aside from the C1 Challenge, the Pickup Truck Racing Championship makes its first of four visits to Rockingham. Having raced around the venue for the past 15 years, this weekend will see the championship descend on the same circuit that the BTCC uses instead of the oval.

Boasting a 23-car entry for Saturday’s two races, all eyes will be on Lea Wood and whether he can extend his points lead at the summit of the standings. Winning both races at Brands Hatch and notching another victory at Croft, Wood holds a commanding lead in the standings and will be keen to add to his silverware collection this weekend.

Hot on his heels however will be defending champion Scott Bourne and David O’Reagan, both of whom also triumphed at Croft last time. Throw into the mix the likes of Mark Willis, Dale Gent and Paul Tompkins, to name a few, and it is set to be an intriguing two races around the ISSC configuration.