BTCC new boys AmD Milltek continued to improve last time out at Croft, with new parts being developed for their Volkswagen Golf, and driver/team owner Shaun Hollamby recording his equal best finish of the year in the final race on Sunday.
More technical issues with the handling and gearbox ruined most of first practise, but after working hard to improve the car’s suspension there was finally improvement – a whole 1.2 seconds actually.
Alas, the team’s difficult debut season threw more problems at them at the end of the session – running into the gravel trap, getting stuck and damaging the splitter. After a new front splitter was fitted, the car failed a ride hide check after qualifying as a result. The Golf was consigned to last place on the grid once again.
Reliability woes struck yet again in Race 1, an alternator failure ending Hollamby’s race after only a handful of laps. The only way from there was up, and after a long battle with Martin Johnson he just missed out on snatching 15th place from him. Matt Neal and Jason Plato‘s woes meant a 14th place finish in the final race of the day.
“We ended the last race much closer to the leaders' pace, which is a testament to all the hard work that the team has put in over the first half of the season,” said Hollamby. “If we continue our progress at the same rate we are confident of getting into the top 10 for the final race of the season at Brands Hatch in October.”
The summer break means AmD Milltek have plenty of time to develop the Golf further, but some key decisions need to be made regarding the direction of development on the new car.
“The Golf's engine is about 40bhp down on power and after Croft we'll be deciding whether to develop this year's engine or start moving forward with plans to use a 2.0 litre turbocharged unit in 2011. At the moment, we don't have the budget to do both”, he explained. “As the driver, I want as much power right now but as the team boss I want to make sure 2011 is not compromised!”