Over the Easter weekend, Lydden Hill Race circuit in Kent held the second round of the 2016 MSA British Rallycross Championship, which, for some drivers and teams, such as Briton James Grint and Albatec Racing, came as the perfect opportunity to make up for a bad start to the season at Croft earlier in March.
Driving Albatec’s Peugeot 208 RX Supercar, Grint had a mixed first qualifying race on the Sunday. The 25 year old driver was hit by another car at the start of the race, which prompted a red flag and a restart. Fortunately, the car and driver were both unharmed by the collision, meaning that Grint lined up once more, and managed to finish second, with his time putting him in third overall. However, he was not able to maintain his position due to a faster final race dropped him to sixth fastest overnight.
The Monday saw Grint driving in his second and third qualifying races, where he finished eighth and ninth fastest respectively, which guaranteed him a place in the semi-finals. It was in this race where Grint made a superb getaway which resulted in him just trailing the eventual winner of the race, Kevin Procter, at the first corner. However, mid-way through the race, Grint made the decision to take his joker, which dropped him down into his finishing position of third place.
The final saw a line-up of eight quality cars and drivers, including the likes of rookie Dan Rooke and Ollie O’Donovan. Coming from the back row, Grint made an outstanding start which saw him move his way up into second place, passing three cars on the outside of Chessons Drift. However, on lap two, the young driver from Hertfordshire made an error which caused him to hit a kerb and spin. Undeterred, and more importantly undamaged, Grint drove superbly for the remainder of the race, and moved back up the order into third position, gaining his first podium of the season. This excellent finish also meant that Grint was elevated to fourth in the overall Supercar standings on 41 points, behind leader Rooke, Procter and O’Donovan.
Andy Scott, the Team Principal at Albatec racing commented that he was “delighted for James to secure his first podium finish after all his efforts this weekend”, and also that he was “sure it won’t be long before he takes his first win”.
When asked about his podium finish, Grint replied that “It’s great to make the final this weekend after disappointingly missing out in Croft, and nice to have a decent result on the board for my championship bid”. Grint also hopes that he and the team can return to Pembrey next month in peak performance.