Audi duo disappointed despite strong pace

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Credit: Marc Waller

AmD Tuning with Cobra Exhausts hoped that the Donington Park round of the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship would continue the strong start to the season that they enjoyed at Brands Hatch.

Following Ollie Jackson’s maiden podium finish and rookie Sam Smelt’s solid race finishes in round one, the team were to be disappointed this time around.

Sam qualified in eighteenth place and outqualified Ollie who lined up twenty seventh.

In race one, Jackson managed to make up quite a few places until he got caught up behind BTC Norlin Racing driver James Nash who made his Honda Civic Type R too wide to pass. Ollie crossed the line in nineteenth. Sam made an error during the race and lost places to finish in twenty eighth.

Race two saw Ollie make contact with Rob Collard at the start of the fourth lap. This saw the Audi collecting one of the polystyrene Dunlop signs on its front grille and therefore having to pit to remove the offending sign before the car overheated. The pitstop dropped him down the field to a twenty ninth placed finish. Sam retired after eight laps due to driveshaft failure.

Disappointment continued in race three as the least competitive of the tyre choice kept Ollie outside of the points and Sam was involved in contact which saw him spin and ultimately finish in twenty fourth place.

Ollie Jackson said, “This is a weekend that could have been so different, and we could easily have come away from it with three good points finishes.

“As it is, we come away from it with nothing on the board despite having good pace in the car once again.”

He continued, “If anything, the performance of the Audi was actually stronger than it was at Brands Hatch but where we were in qualifying hurt our chances.”

AmD Team Principal Shaun Hollamby is still encouraged by the pace shown by both drivers despite a tough weekend, “Both Ollie and Sam have done a good job on race day and it’s unfortunate that the end results don’t reflect it.

“Ollie was on the back foot after qualifying but the pace he showed in the three races was very encouraging and he could well have come away from the weekend with some good points on his board.

“Sam has also taken a big step forwards in terms of his performance this weekend and it is unfortunate that luck wasn’t on his side on race day, but he I hope that when we get to Thruxton he can continue to move his way forwards towards the points scoring positions.”


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