It’s great to be back to update you with the latest goings on at Ciceley Racing.
We’ve had a great season so far in the 2013 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship and after getting our consistent form back on track at Snetterton; I was really excited about heading to Knockhill.
Our trip to the Fife circuit would be without my engineer Paul Ridgeway, so lots of preparation took place in the run up to the event, ensuring that we were in the best possible position ahead of the race weekend (This meant some very late nights!).
The first two free practice sessions went very well for us, the Toyota Avensis felt brilliant around what is a very challenging circuit. At the conclusion of the Saturday morning we had recorded the second fastest time in both 40-minute sessions.
I expected qualifying to be a little more challenging but we held our own throughout the session to record the seventh fastest time, finishing as the highest placed Toyota in the field. Just two tenths of a second separated the top seven on the grid, which goes to show how competitive it was out on track!
Race one has to be the highlight of the weekend for me; I made a good start off the line and had no problem in challenging the guys in front of me. To be able to compete with the likes of Matt Neal and Jason Plato is a brilliant feeling, but pass them and take the chequered flag in fourth position was tremendous, it felt like a race victory for me!
Unfortunately we were slapped with a post-race penalty for making a little bit of contact with Plato, but to finish in fifth position still meant that we had scored a good amount of points for the championship.
I made another good start off the line in race two and held sixth position during the opening stages of the race, but a driveshaft failure ended our race prematurely on lap 8, leaving us with the tough challenge of working our way through pack during the final race of the day.
The finale to the weekend was extremely eventful for me after lining up on the grid in 23rd position. Knockhill is well known for its lack of passing opportunity, but in a determined manner I worked my way up to ninth position. The result saw me record my 17th top ten finish out of 21 races so far this campaign, a brilliant feat for the Ciceley Racing team in its first year in the championship.
Overall, I’m happy to come away firmly situated in seventh position in the championship standings. I currently hold a significant lead over Aron Smith in the standings, so I’ll be looking to give Sam Tordoff a real run for his money at Rockingham this weekend…bring it on!