A strong weekend for both Redstone Racing drivers meant the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship team left Rockingham on a high.
Mat Jackson, running in the NGTC Ford Focus for only the third race weekend since its hurried inception, delivered the new car’s best performances yet while Aron Smith recovered from an appalling start to the weekend to secure two excellent results.
Jackson delivered a pair of fourth-place finishes and a sixth while Smith, who ended race one in the gravel, fought through to 6th from 20th in race two and finished 5th in race three after leading the first half of the race.
Team Manager Oly Collins, keen to remind people just how new the new car is, was full of praise for both the drivers.
“After Aron’s race one result I was worried we were going to have a wrecked weekend,” he said, “but two fantastic drives in race two and three gave him two great results. I was hoping he could hold Andy off for a few more laps to get the Indy win but he drove very maturely in difficult conditions.
“And for Mat to get two fourth and a sixth was more indication of what we have all done as a team with very little running to get the NGTC car going so well. I have to keep reminding people that it’s done just over 1000kms and now only three race meetings, we’re still learning. Mat drove extremely well all weekend, so pats on the back all round!”
Smith described the feeling of leading his first BTCC laps as “a dream come true” while Jackson saw plenty of positives as the team took yet another step forward with the new car.
“It was a positive weekend for us,” he explained, “we got to run the NGTC in the dry and wet for some more testing – so to take away two fourths and a six is a mega weekend. We’ve learnt a lot to take away and we can only get stronger.
“Every weekend that we race we’re testing in the public eye, the other NGTC’s like Honda and MG are well ahead of us in terms of time so it’s a testament to the team that we’ve got a car that’s reliable and competitive at this early stage to get the results that we’re managing.
“I think that with a few more tweaks we can get that first podium – it’s going to be tough to topple the Honda’s but hopefully at Silverstone we can get there.”