BTCC

Drivers No Longer To Make Race Three Draw As Austin Offers Apology

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Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship drivers will no longer draw the reverse grid positions of the third and final race of meetings, following an incident involving Rob Austin at Brands Hatch.

Series director Alan Gow said that the change will immediately come into effect at Donington Park, meaning that a recent trend of the 10th place driver from race two picking a ball from the pot live on ITV4 will be no more.

“I have changed the draw procedure with immediate effect so that no current drivers take part in it,” said Gow to AUTOSPORT.

The decision comes after last weekend’s race three pole-sitter, Austin, owned up to picking out the number he needed to take the number one slot on the grid during the race three draw, for which he later apologised for magnanimously.

The 34-year-old was challenged for manipulation and admitted his guilt, before Gow redrew the grid again. The outcome was no different, as the series boss also drew the #10 ball to put the Audi man on pole before he went on to finish fifth having led most of the encounter.

Austin offered his apologies when speaking to The Checkered Flag afterwards, the action remedied by the redraw while no penalty from the officials was applied.

“I’ve seen other drivers do it before and I could deny it, but I can’t”, said Austin to TCF. “I understand how bad it looks, I understand it’s not fair for the fans and I feel I haven’t covered myself in glory.

“The problem is I’m not very good at deception of any kind. I’m not proud of it and it doesn’t sit well with me what I did, but obviously it won’t happen again.

“The only thing that I would say is that, many don’t know the amount of blood, sweat and tears that goes into this and, you see a 10 there in front of you. They give you a little window at the bottom, so it was just staring at me!”

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