Motorbase Performance is determined to build its lead in the Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship Manufacturers/Constructors standings when the first half of the season reaches its conclusion at Croft Circuit in North Yorkshire this coming weekend, 25th/26th June.
Moving to the summit of the title battle 10 days ago at Oulton Park following another successful outing in the UK’s biggest and best motor racing championship, Motorbase Performance/Ford will arrive at Croft a couple of days from now with sights also fixed on much more besides.
The team’s NAPA Racing UK entry goes into the fifth event of the campaign second in the Teams Championship, while reigning BTCC Champion Ash Sutton is second in the Drivers Championship after chalking-up his fifth and sixth podiums of the campaign last time out in Cheshire.
Sutton is getting up a real head of steam as he and the team make continued improvements and steps forward with the Ford Focus ST, powered by a Hybrid Mountune engine, and is going into rounds 13, 14 and 15 with the goal of some big results for NAPA Racing UK.
Croft is, of course, the home track for Dan Cammish and the Leeds racer is hoping he can finally put the bad luck which has impacted much of the first half of the season firmly behind him. Chalking up consistent top six finishes at Oulton, with a best of fifth, he is hungry to get back onto the podium as his pace deserves.
The next few days will be non-stop for Cammish, beginning tomorrow, Thursday, 23rd June, with the first of two days representing NAPA Racing UK, Kwik Fit and the BTCC at the annual Goodwood Festival of Speed in West Sussex. After taking to the famous Hillclimb tomorrow and Friday, 24th June, he will make the trip up to Croft for the BTCC race weekend – in some style too, by helicopter!
Oulton Park showcased some very strong race performances from Apec Racing with Beavis Morgan drivers Ollie Jackson and Sam Osborne, but both were also impacted by misfortune and multiple incidences of contact which stymied hopes of serial points finishes.
Jackson’s highlight drive came in race three in Cheshire, gaining 10 positions to claim a 14th place finish, and with pleasing changes made to his Ford Focus ST he is confident they will also reap rewards at Croft. Last season, Jackson achieved a best finish of 14th overall at the 2.1-mile track.
Osborne’s weekend last time out at Oulton ended less positively, contact from a rival putting his car in the barriers and retirement. Earlier in the day, realistic hopes of strong points results – especially after a competitive qualifying run – were undone in the first two races by contact and questionable driving from rivals. Osborne is relishing Croft though, having taken a 13th place best last season.
Oly Collins – Motorbase Performance Team Manager:
“Headed to Croft we’re in a great position being leading Manufacturer and joint leading in the Teams Championship, now we need to stay there! Historically Croft has been a rear-wheel drive favoured circuit, now it’s our job to change that stat and go get some more silverware. The car this season has evolved and we’re still learning with the Hybrid system. Oulton Park gave us a big chunk of points and some great performances, this weekend we need to keep that momentum going into the summer break. It’s also nice to be representing NAPA and the BTCC at Goodwood Festival of Speed this weekend as well with Dan and Lewis [Selby] taking to the Hill for the shootout. Needless to say, we’ve been busy in the workshop!”
Ash Sutton – NAPA Racing UK, No.1:
“Croft is a circuit I’ve always loved, it’s fast, lairy and quite old school – I just seem to click with it. I’ve got fond memories there as well as it was where I scored my first BTCC win back in 2016. We’re continuing to unlock more and more from the car so I’m heading into this weekend feeling confident that we can have another solid three races. If we can end the first half of the season with a win that would be mega!”
Dan Cammish – NAPA Racing UK, No.9:
“This week is definitely one of the busiest of my career so far, starting off with the trip to Goodwood to drive the NAPA Racing UK car up the hill. I’m really excited to be part of the Festival of Speed and representing NAPA, Motorbase and, of course, Kwik Fit and the BTCC. I’ll be heading up to Croft from there by helicopter, so that’s going to be fun as I’ve never been in one, and I can’t wait to be back at my home track. We did the best we could with what we had at Oulton, and moved up the championship, but I’m hungry to be back on the podium and determined to achieve that at Croft.”
Ollie Jackson – Apec Racing with Beavis Morgan, No.48:
“We were competitive at Croft last year and I’m hopeful that will be the case again this weekend, especially after a strong conclusion to Oulton. We definitely hit on something with the car ahead of race three there which helped with the weight and the balance, and the impact was obvious as we could really fight hard with some quick guys. Three points finishes would be fantastic, if we can push into the top 10 even better for a positive end to the first half of the season.”
Sam Osborne – Apec Racing with Beavis Morgan, No.77:
“Croft’s a great track and I really am looking forward to being back there at the weekend. We’re moving forward with the car all the time, in qualifying we’ve got the pace it’s just translating that for the races. Oulton was another step forward for us with the set-up, just a shame we got a bit beaten up in the races. Last season at Croft was very positive, so I’m aiming to at least replicate that and hopefully string together our best raceday of the season so far ahead of the summer break.”
Free practice will begin at Croft at 09.30 on Saturday, 25th June, with session two following at 12.05 and qualifying at 15.20 – the latter streamed live online at the www.itv.com/btcc website.
Round 13 will get underway at 12.05 on Sunday, 26th June, with round 14 beginning at 14.35 and round 15 concluding the day’s BTCC action at 17.05. All three races will be streamed live online and screened live on ITV4.
2022 BTCC Drivers Championship
3rd Ash Sutton, 151pts; 10th Dan Cammish, 72pts; 22nd Ollie Jackson, 8pts; 24th Sam Osborne, 1pt
2022 BTCC Manufacturers/Constructors Championship
1st Motorbase Performance/Ford, 301pts
2022 BTCC Teams Championship
2nd NAPA Racing UK, 223pts; 13th Apec Racing with Beavis Morgan, 12pts
2022 Jack Sears Trophy
4th Sam Osborne, 131pts