Well what a weekend of ups and downs!!
To be honest we had a really difficult time in qualifying but Dave Bartrum presented me with a lucky egg like the one from cool runnings on the Sunday morning which might have helped. Although sitting in the gravel in race one and using some rather colourful language down the radio certainly wasn’t on my ‘to do list’ for the weekend and at that point I could’ve smashed the egg! But thankfully it turned around as the rain fell and that was a turning point in my weekend.
Race two was one of those races that I never once checked how many laps were left, I never wanted it to end and to come from the back up to 6th is something I’ll never forget. I’ve always read of those types of drives in the past and thought it was massively impressive so to think I’m capable of something like that is something I’m extremely proud of. It has to be said that the highlight of that race has to be my battle with Rob Collard. To run side by side for almost a lap is something I’ll never forget, battles like that are the reason I love touring cars. It gives a type of racing like no other. I remember crossing the line and seeing the whole team hanging over the pit wall which has to be one of the highlights of my season and one of the best drives I’ve ever had.
Well what can I say about race three, to get a chance to lead a touring car race was literally a dream come true for me. The pace I had a Knockhill may have been perceived as a flash in the pan so to back it up with a really strong showing the following race weekend is something I was so proud of. I’ve won races in the Clio Cup over the last few years but none of which meant half as much to me as leading a touring car race did. To think I was able to hold my own at the front means so much to me and there will always be ‘ifs and buts’ BUT if that safety car hadn’t been deployed you never know what could’ve happened. I distinctively remember getting the message over the radio saying that the safety car was going in and thinking now is my time to step up and show what I’m capable of, I got it all hooked up on the restart and proceeded to pull out a bit of gap over the next few laps but unfortunately my tyres couldn’t hold on. As I was reeled in and remember thinking that I would kill for some of those NGTC tyres right about now because around Rockingham they certainly have an advantage. And to still finish 5th is a really good result for me so I was absolutely chuffed coming away from the weekend.
With that said I hope the tide can turn in our favour at Silverstone, in fact I think the remaining two tracks should give us a good chance to really challenge at the front which is all I want to do! I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again all this would not be possible without everyone at Redstone Racing. I honestly don’t think you’ll find a team like us in the paddock. We feel everything together so to give them back something in race two and three meant everything to me, they put their heart and souls into the racing so it’s great to see everyone going away from a weekend beaming from ear to ear.
So Silverstone is next, hopefully I can put on a good show for everyone and give you something good to cheer about! Also in the meantime if you’re bored you could always go find me on twitter (@aronsmith_) Obviously you’ll get the occasional racing update but more importantly you’ll be inundated with photos of my dog and obviously what cupcakes I’m baking during the week!