Month: May 2018

AmD with AutoAid/RCIB Insurance Racing rescues points from tough weekend

Thruxton BTCC 2018

The AmD with AutoAid/RCIB Insurance Racing team was able to salvage a points finish from a tough weekend on track as the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship headed for Thruxton for the third round of the year.

The West Thurrock-based team headed to Hampshire in optimistic mood but was left on the back foot after a tough qualifying session at the quickest circuit on the calendar, although race day saw drivers Rory Butcher and Tom Boardman show the ongoing potential of the MG6 GT6.

Despite a heavy crash in practice as a result of a tyre going down after hitting debris on track, Rory was able to make it out on track for qualifying and secured the 26th best time – despite being less than 1.5s away from pole.

Overtaking would prove to be tough in the opening race of the weekend, with Rory crossing the line in 24th, but he was able to make more progress in race two as he battled his way into the top 20 within three laps.

A sudden issue that caused the car to cut out on lap eight then undid his good work and dropped him back to 26th before a series of searing laps saw the Fife-racer fight back to 19th spot by the finish.

In a position to push for points in race three, Rory was part of a train of cars running in the midfield throughout the 16 lap encounter and when the opportunity to break into the top 15 arrived with two laps to go, he was able to fight his way into 14th spot to score points for the third straight weekend.

Team-mate Tom had been left on the back foot after qualifying in 31st place on the grid but the Forton-based driver was able to make forward progress when the lights went out in race one.

Having climbed up six places, Tom was set to achieve his pre-race goal before heavy contact at the final chicane ripped a rear wheel from his car and forced him to retire.

Left near the back of the grid for race two, Tom fought his way through to 22nd place despite not feeling at one with his car, with the team then making a number of set-up changes ahead of race three.

Immediately more comfortable behind the wheel, Tom was quicker than he had been at any other time during the day as he fought his way to 18th spot, with the improved pace leaving him confident for the meetings to come.

Rory Butcher, #6 AmD with AutoAid/RCIB Insurance Racing MG6 GT, said:
“It’s been a tough weekend for us after the accident in practice, which really put us on the back foot. The guys did a great job to get the car out for qualifying and the focus on race day was to try and bring home some points.

“I really thought we could do it in race two until the issue with the car and it made me more determined to score in race three. To end the weekend with some more points on the board is a real positive from where we were, and we will come out fighting at Oulton Park next time out.”

Tom Boardman, #12 AmD with AutoAid/RCIB Insurance Racing MG6 GT, said:
“Like Rory it’s been a tough weekend. Qualifying was difficult and then race one was a disaster. There was no need for the contact that put me out and it left us with a lot of work to do to repair the car for race two.

“We made a bit of progress in that race but I wasn’t really happy with the car and we made some pretty big changes for race three. All of a sudden, I felt a lot more comfortable and I think it showed in the performance.

“There is a lot we can take away from that race and I think that will give us a real chance to make some strong forward progress at Oulton Park.”

Shaun Hollamby, AmD with AutoAid/RCIB Insurance Racing team principal, said:
“It’s been the toughest weekend for us so far with the MGs but we’ve been around the BTCC long enough to know that you have to take the rough with the smooth. It’s unfortunate that both drivers were caught up in incidents that weren’t their fault but the guys in the team did a great job to ensure Rory and Tom were able to stay out on track having sustained pretty big damage.

“To end the weekend with a car in the points is good after a tough start and with the pace both drivers displayed in the final race, I think we can hopeful of a return to form at Oulton Park.”

Picture again thanks to Marc Waller.

AmD with AutoAid/RCIB Insurance Racing eager to maintain strong start at Thruxton

BTTC Thruxton

The AmD with AutoAid/RCIB Insurance Racing team will seek to maintain its strong start to the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship season when the series heads for Thruxton this weekend for the third round of the year.

The West Thurrock-based team picked up a pair of points scoring finishes last time out at Donington Park to make it six for the season so far with the MG6 GT, which it is campaigning for the first time this year.

Fife racer Rory Butcher continued his impressive start to life with the MG in the second meeting of the year, with two top 15 finishes leaving him just a point away from the top ten in the championship standings.

The 31-year-old will be making his return to Thruxton for the first time since 2013, when he posted the fastest lap of the opening race whilst competing in the Porsche Carrera Cup GB.

Rory has fond memories of the quickest circuit on the calendar having also qualified on the front row in the 2012 Carrera Cup – a meeting where he also secured his first two podium finishes in the series and led a race for the first time.

With three top ten finishes to his name already this season, Rory will seek to add to his tally this weekend to maintain his strong placing in both the Independents’ and Jack Sears Trophy standings.

Team-mate Tom Boardman endured a frustrating weekend at Donington Park when his hopes of a strong points finish in the final race were ended by contact that forced him to retire for the first time this season.

Returning to the series this season for the first time since 2011, the Forton-based driver has already shown his pace having come close to a podium finish at Brands Hatch and sits just outside the top ten in the Independents’ championship.

The 34-year-old has a strong record at Thruxton in the past, having scored a fine fifth place finish on his debut in the top class of the series back in 2010 and his maiden podium finish twelve months later.

Keen to put Donington behind him, Tom heads for Thruxton in confident mood and optimistic about his chances of returning to the points scoring positions.

Rory Butcher, #6 AmD with AutoAid/RCIB Insurance Racing MG6 GT, said:
“I’m really looking forward to Thruxton this weekend. It’s the quickest circuit on the calendar and one of the most exiting, and it will be good to return after five years away.

“The fact that we ran the hard tyre that is mandatory at Thruxton during the Donington weekend means we have an idea of how it will perform on the MG and have some good data to take with us into the weekend. That will also help us when you bear in mind that we didn’t take part in the test that was held last month, although I’m confident that that won’t hold us back and we’ll soon be up to speed.

“I’ve had a good start to the year and I will adopt the same approach this weekend that I took at Brands Hatch and Donington as it served me well. We’ve been racing strongly and have shown we have a car that is capable of pushing into the points, and anything beyond that is a bonus.”

Tom Boardman, #12 AmD with AutoAid/RCIB Insurance Racing MG6 GT, said:
“Thruxton is a weekend I’ve been really looking forward to as I have always enjoyed the high-speed nature of the circuit. It’s also a circuit where I’ve gone well before, and I have great memories of taking my first outright podium in the SEAT back in 2011.

“Donington proved to be tough for me as we missed out on a really good result in the final race when I was punted off into the gravel, but there were still plenty of positives to take away from the weekend.

“Every time we go out on track, I feel that we are moving forwards with the car as we continue to learn more about it, and I’m confident that we can do the same again this weekend and push for some more points.”

Shaun Hollamby, AmD with AutoAid/RCIB Insurance Racing team principal, said:
“With two rounds down, I think we’ve made a good start to life with the MGs and both Tom and Rory have shown strong pace on track. We’ve been able to get some good points on the board and the aim this weekend is to try and add to our tally and maintain our position in the championship.

“Although it’s been a few years since either driver raced at Thruxton, they both have good records at the circuit in the past and we are hopeful of more solid results this time around.

“We’ve shown that the MG is strong in race trim and whilst points in all three races are the aim, it would be great to see both cars pushing towards the top ten – it’s certainly something we feel is achievable.

Ahead of this weekend, we are also pleased to add Martin Smith and his company www.usedmgtfspares.co.uk, who specialise in all things MG in East Lydford Somerset, to our growing list of sponsors.”

Photo Credit to Marc Waller (thank you! 🙂 )