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Pace unrewarded for AmDTuning.com at Thruxton
Old 5 May 2014 19:16
Category: BTCC
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The AmDTuning.com team was left to reflect on what might have been after the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship headed for Thruxton for the third round of the year.

The West Thurrock-based team went into the event in buoyant mood, with Inverness racer Dave Newsham hoping to build on the pace he displayed in the previous meeting at Donington Park.

A challenging qualifying session saw Dave post the 18th quickest time, leaving him with work to do when the opening race of the weekend got underway under glorious sunshine at the Hampshire circuit.

From the moment the lights went out, the two-time BTCC race winner was a man on a mission as he made up places to sit inside the points-scoring positions by the end of the third lap.

With the teams Ford Focus posting lap-times comparable with the front-runners, Dave worked his way up to twelfth spot before a hard-fought battle with the similar Focus of former champion Fabrizio Giovanardi.

Finally able to find a way past the Italian on the penultimate lap, Dave was then unfortunately forced into retirement when a spin at Church the fastest corner on the BTCC calendar saw him slide off the road into the infield.

Forced to start at the back for race two, Dave fought hard to work his way up to the fringes of the points before being caught out by Rob Austin at the final chicane when the Audi driver hit the brakes early for the corner, with Dave suffering a second spin that dropped him down the order.

Having crossed the line 23rd, he was left to fight from the back again in the final race and despite contact early on with Jack Clarke damaging the Focus, he brought the car home in 14th to rescue two points from the weekend.

"Its been the most frustrating weekend of the season in terms of results," he said. "Without the spin in race one and then the incident in race two, things could have gone a lot different, and while it was good to score points in race three despite picking up some damage early on, we should have taken more away from the weekend; I honestly feel the pace in the car was good enough to push for the podium.

"Although Im disappointed, there is a lot that we can take away in terms of what we have learned again, and its clear that the car is quick; we just have to make the most of it. Hopefully we can get a test in before Oulton Park to work on a few things and then come out fighting in the next round and fight for the results we are capable of."

Team boss Shaun Hollamby also preferred to the look to the positives after a challenging race day, with the Ford having performed better than the results on paper would suggest.

"Again this weekend weve shown we have the pace on race day, and now we have to make sure we make the most of any opportunities we get as Thruxton has been an opportunity missed," he said. "In race one, we were battling with [Jack] Goff and Giovanardi when Dave had his off and they ended up on the front row for race three, so it gives an idea of where we could have been in things had gone our way. Who knows what we might have been celebrating then.

"Its clear that we have a strong package with the Ford, but we are still learning all the time and the aim is to use the gap we have before Oulton Park to go away and do a test.

"That will allow us to work on a few things to improve our performance further, especially when it comes to qualifying, and then we can come out fighting and challenge for the kind of results that the team deserves for the work that weve put in so far."

Photo: AMSoul-Images
Tags: 2014 btcc

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