Special Tuning Racing pair Tom Boardman and Dave Newsham were pleased with the performance of the SEAT Leon around Croft, despite a modest points haul at the end of the weekend.
Boardman's sole points finish came in race one, converting 12th on the grid into tenth in the race. Conditions were slippery and Boardman's decision to start on wet tyres looked set to pay off handsomely and he was leading Alex MacDowall in the battle for eighth.
But a safety car period played into the hands of those who started on slick fronts, with James Nash and Paul O'Neill pushing him down to tenth.
“My drive in the first race was good, and if it hadn’t been for the safety car adding extra laps to a drying circuit, my tyres wouldn’t have gone off as much, and I would have finished a couple of places higher”, added Boardman.
The Preston man dropped out of race two on lap four after clipping the tyre wall coming through the chicane, resulting in a broken front suspension. The Special Tuning team managed to repair the car in time for race three but that would also end in retirement following a gearbox problem.
In contrast, Dave Newsham's day got better and better as the afternoon wore on. From 14th on the grid, the Welshman suffered a puncture at the first corner and ended up a lap down in 19th. Newsham's performance in race two though was stunning, gaining eight places on the first lap before scything past Nick Foster and Frank Wrathall to move into the points.
Problems for Jason Plato and Tom Onslow-Cole saw him move up to seventh, before a recovering Foster sneaked past him at the final corner to take the position, and pole for race three. Despite losing a place late on, Newsham was proud of his performance.
Coming from the back of the grid I'm well pleased with that!” exclaimed Dave. “I was actually struggling with my tyres throughout, but I kept pushing and making up place after place. It was a case of driving the correct lines and taking my chances as they came. It was a fantastic drive to be proud of.”
Newsham capped off the weekend with another top-ten finish to ensure that the Preston-based team scored points in all three races.
This delighted Team Principal John Boardman, who was happy with the performance of the turbo-powered SEAT Leon, especially given the boost reduction that was imposed by TOCA just before the weekend.
“There were quite a few positives to take away from the weekend. Despite only having 24hrs notice of the further boost reduction to our turbo engines, we still had good speed. The team once again proved they can match the bigger teams and managed to have the car ready for the final race of the day. We will now use the time we have off before the next round to work on the engine reflecting the new boost levels.”