Renaultsport’s UK Motorsport Championship Manager Will Fewkes feels that the Renault UK Clio Cup is in a really strong position following an exciting 2015 season, which came to a dramatic conclusion at Brands Hatch GP earlier this month.
A late surge in entries saw twenty cars tackle the final two meetings of the campaign, hinting at a positive 2016, while Ashley Sutton made history by emerging from a thrilling three-way title battle as the first rookie champion since 2003.
“It’s been a brilliant season finale, and I’d like to congratulate Ashley Sutton on his magnificent title victory at Brands Hatch,” Fewkes told TCF.
“The fact that he has achieved this goal in his first season of competing in the Renault UK Clio Cup is exceptional given the calibre of drivers that we have on our hands… this hasn’t been done for a very long time.”
“I’m delighted to look back on my first season in charge and know that we have provided some of the most impressive racing alongside the BTCC at its events in 2015. The fact that the fight at the front was one of the most exciting that we can recall shows that the Clio Cup is back to its very best.”
Amongst the late season influx of entries were drivers graduating from the Michelin Clio Cup Series, Ginetta Junior Championship and BRSCC Fiesta Championship, the latter proving to be a real feeder series for the Clio Cup in recent seasons.
Fewkes believes the Clio Cup’s track record of nurturing touring car talents of the future – seven Clio graduates featured on the BTCC podium this season – is increasing the appeal of the championship.
“The Renault UK Clio Cup is building a very nice reputation at the moment and young drivers are looking at it as a great step for their careers, which is obviously very important for us,” Fewkes enthused.
“Some fantastic drivers have graduated from the championship in recent years, as we’ve seen most recently with the likes of Jack Goff, Josh Cook and Mike Bushell in the BTCC, and I’m sure we will continue to create some great talent next season.”
After seeing a number of drivers test the water in the final few meetings ahead of potential full campaigns in 2016, Fewkes says the Renaultsport UK management team will be working hard over the winter to ensure entry numbers are strong from the off next season.
“As the season has gone on people have seen the show that we are creating is very special and they’ve wanted to get involved, and we’re delighted with the entry numbers we’ve attracted for the final few meetings,” he concluded.
“Renaultsport UK and the BARC are very lucky to boast one of the most experienced and professional management teams of any championship in British motorsport, and we won’t stop working between now and the Brands Hatch season opener come April.
“We want to keep raising the bar for this championship and you can be sure that we will be aiming to come out of the starting blocks with an even bigger show in 2016.”