Swift takes maiden TCR UK victory at Oulton Park

by Phil Kinch

The opening race of the 2019 TCR UK Touring Car Championship took place at Oulton Park, where the race victory was decided after a final lap clash.

Carl Swift, driving the Endurance Financial Motorsport CUPRA, won the opening race of the season, however, it was a poor start from Dunlop Touring Car Trophy class pole-sitter Henry Neal that allowed both Ollie Taylor and Swift to pass the Honda. Taylor steadily opening up a lead of over a second over the new three laps, as the recovering Neal attacked Swift for second place.

After dicing with the CUPRA driver, Neal attacked going into Knickerbrook and succeeded in taking second place from Swift before setting off after Taylor, driving the Maximum Motorsport run CUPRA.

As Neal closed on Taylor towards the end of the race, Taylor took a defensive strategy to hold off the Honda Civic NGTC car. Despite several attempts to by Neal get past, Taylor was able to hold on until lap twelve. Neal attempted to pass Taylor on the inside at Old Hall and the pair made contact, with both cars ending up in the barriers.

Swift took the race lead, ahead of Alex Day in the TCT Class Audi A4 going into the final lap. The race was red-flagged due to the Taylor-Neal clash, allowing Swift to secure his maiden TCR UK victory and Sunny Wong confirmed in second place in the TCR UK results.

Behind the battle for the lead, the Teamwork Huff Motorsport driver suffered a poor start and fell back behind TCT runner James Turkington. Wong was able to get back past by lap three and opened up a large gap ahead of the SEAT Leon Supercopa, before taking third place overall.

Out of the five entries for TCR UK, Lewis Kent was a non-starter due to engine issues encountered on Friday whilst Darelle Wilson has chosen to sit out the Oulton Park event.

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