London-based Scuderia Vittoria had a weekend full of highs and lows during the latest rounds of the AirAsia Renault Clio Cup UK at Rockingham.
Team leader Stefan Hodgetts, who has secured four podiums in four races since returning to the championship, had a tough weekend. Qualifying just eleventh, the KX Akademy member got up to sixth in the opening race, but it was ruined by last lap contact leading to retirement. Race two saw Hodgetts reach sixth once again, but battle scars from the opening encounter went on to hamper him, dropping him to eighth at the finish.
One Call Insurance-backed team-mate Vic Covey and Finlay Crocker had an eventful opening race, the duo making contact, resulting in fifteenth and twelfth place finishes respectively, while Ronnie Klos impressed to run as high as twelfth, before a late mistake dropped him to seventeenth.
In the wet second race, Crocker finished highest of the trio in thirteenth, with Covey eighteenth, while Klos’s race had to end early with an issue with his windscreen leading to poor visibility.
“We suffered quite a bit of damage from the first race including the Track Rod, which meant that we really struggled in the second race as a whole. An issue with the door also made it very hard for me to see during the second race as the car kept steaming up,” said Hodgetts. “The good news is that we will have a new shell for Silverstone which is just what we need on that type of layout. I expect to be right up there fighting for victories.”
“We didn’t have the best of luck in race one this weekend. I made a good start but unfortunately Finlay tapped me at turn four, which happens in racing, it meant that I could only recover to finish 15th,” said Covey. “Race two was much better for me, during the opening stages of the race we were very competitive and I kept up with Stefan as we tried to work our way through the field. An error at the hairpin saw me out brake myself, dropping me to 18th in the process which was unfortunate.”
“I made a good start in race one and ran well on the first half of the lap, but then I made a little bit of an ambitious move on Vic at turn 4 which lost us some time. I was still able to work my way up to 12th which I think was really good considering the error,” said Crocker. “I couldn’t see a thing in race two, the windscreen just totally misted up during the race. I feel that I still carried a relatively good pace, but with my visibility issues it was just a case of getting to the end of the race.”
“Race one was brilliant for us, the car felt awesome, it’s just a shame that we got given the grid penalty after qualifying on Saturday. I was running well in 12th but I out-broke myself two laps from the end which ruined my race,” said Klos. “My windows started to steam in the collecting area before the second race so I knew that we were going to have an issue. The race got underway and it didn’t get any better, I couldn’t see to take the right lines. Despite pushing hard, it would have been too dangerous to stay out there.”