Weekend Review: Croft
Andrew Jordan was in commanding form at Croft today (16 June) as the BMW Pirtek Racing man claimed his fourth and fifth Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship victories of the season.
Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Gallagher’s Tom Chilton triumphed in the final race with a faultless performance in his Ford Focus.
The ultra competitive BTCC field faced mixed conditions throughout the day in North Yorkshire as Dunlop’s Sport Maxx dry and BluResponse wet tyres played their part during an exciting afternoon of action.
Jordan converted pole position into a comfortable lights-to-flag win with an assured drive in the opener.
The 30-year-old dealt with race-long attention from Chris Smiley’s BTC Racing Honda Civic Type R, as well as a lengthy safety car period, to continue his race winning form from Thruxton last time out.
The fight for the final place on the podium also remained unchanged but it wasn’t without incident. Chilton did brilliantly to hold on to third from the fast-starting BMWs of Colin Turkington and Tom Oliphant, and he ended the race as he started it… with both Bavarian machines on his bumper.
Race two was a similar story for Jordan as he dominated the contest from start to finish.
The BMW star made a good getaway from pole position and pulled a comfortable gap from the chasing pack, as a gaggle of cars lined up behind Smiley’s Honda in second place.
Reigning champion Turkington eventually made it by Smiley and reeled in Jordan’s sister 3 Series in the closing stages, but it wasn’t enough to prevent his stablemate from yet another standout success.
Halfords Yuasa Racing’s Dan Cammish claimed the final spot on the rostrum as he, and team-mate Matt Neal, relegated Smiley further down the order.
Unfortunately, worse was to come for the ballast-laden Honda of Smiley as he tried to defend from Ash Sutton’s Subaru Levorg on the final lap. The pair had already touched at the Complex on the penultimate tour and it happened again on the run to the same corner, this time leaving Smiley’s battleship grey machine tipping into the barrier just two corners from the end of the race.
Adrian Flux Subaru Racing’s Sutton took fifth from a lively Jason Plato in the Sterling Insurance with Power Maxed Racing Vauxhall, as the BTCC’s most successful driver showed his return to the podium was getting ever closer.
Chilton edged out Josh Cook in the final encounter whilst third for Plato saw him take to the rostrum for the first time since Croft last year.
Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Gallagher’s Chilton – starting from pole position in damp conditions – had to defend for almost the entire race from BTC Racing’s Cook and Plato, but the multiple race winner did so in style to take an important win that ignites his championship challenge.
A fourth, second and sixth places for Turkington sent him into the outright lead of the Drivers’ standings, as the reigning champion holds an 11 point advantage over Cook, with Sutton a further two points in arrears.
BMW now tops the Manufacturers’ order although Halfords Yuasa Racing heads the Teams’ table.
Cook and his BTC Racing squad are at the summit of both Independents’ standings, whilst Rory Butcher maintains top spot in the Jack Sears Trophy.
Rounds 13, 14 and 15 of the 2019 Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship will take place at Oulton Park in two weeks’ time.
Andrew Jordan said: “A second double of the year… West Surrey Racing and BMW; they’re the boys and girls. I couldn’t have asked for more today. It was pretty much perfect. I was overwhelmed after winning race two with full ballast, because to get two double-wins in successive events is something that almost never happens in the BTCC and it shows what an amazing job the team have done with the BMW. It’s drawing us back into contention after Donington Park. We need to keep our expectations in check – there are a lot of quick guys out there. We’re on good form. I feel good in myself and with the car and the team. The title fight really starts here.”
Tom Chilton said: “I said to my dad I’d try and get him a podium for Father’s Day and he said that wouldn’t be good enough, he wanted a win! It was a perfect weekend for me and the team. We’ve managed not just a double podium, but we got the win as well. We’re in it to win it. Everyone in the team is working hard to put all of our knowledge together and make this old girl go faster this year and we’ve done a great job. I’m really looking forward to going to Oulton Park next. I’ll be looking for more of the same.”
Colin Turkington said: “Once again Croft proves to be a great track for BMW, and now for the new 3 Series. It’s been a great weekend for me. I came here sharing the lead of the points and I leave in front on my own, which is exactly where we all want to be. Second, fourth and sixth represent big points and was as much as I could hope for. It’s fantastic to drive a car that feels so good. Next we go to Oulton Park, where we’ve had some great results in the past, and even though I’ll have maximum success ballast, the aim will be to continue scoring big points.”
2019 Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship – Round 10 – Croft Circuit
1 Andrew JORDAN (GBR) BMW Pirtek Racing 18 laps
2 Chris SMILEY (GBR) BTC Racing +1.835s
3 Tom CHILTON (GBR) Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Gallagher +2.685s
4 Colin TURKINGTON (GBR) Team BMW +3.259s
5 Tom OLIPHANT (GBR) Team BMW +3.472s
6 Dan CAMMISH (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +4.405s
7 Ashley SUTTON (GBR) Adrian Flux Subaru Racing +4.736s
8 Jason PLATO (GBR) Sterling Insurance with Power Maxed Racing +6.150s
9 Josh COOK (GBR) BTC Racing +10.751s
10 Matt NEAL (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +12.561s
2019 Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship – Round 11 – Croft Circuit
1 Andrew JORDAN (GBR) BMW Pirtek Racing 15 laps
2 Colin TURKINGTON (GBR) Team BMW +1.100s
3 Dan CAMMISH (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +11.543s
4 Matt NEAL (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +12.731s
5 Ashley SUTTON (GBR) Adrian Flux Subaru Racing +20.209s
6 Jason PLATO (GBR) Sterling Insurance with Power Maxed Racing +20.753s
7 Tom INGRAM (GBR) Team Toyota GB with Ginsters +21.723s
8 Josh COOK (GBR) BTC Racing +22.119s
9 Tom CHILTON (GBR) Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Gallagher +22.401s
10 Aiden MOFFAT (GBR) Laser Tools Racing +25.643s
2019 Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship – Round 12 – Croft Circuit
1 Tom CHILTON (GBR) Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Gallagher 17 laps
2 Josh COOK (GBR) BTC Racing +0.764s
3 Jason PLATO (GBR) Sterling Insurance with Power Maxed Racing +1.117s
4 Ashley SUTTON (GBR) Adrian Flux Subaru Racing +5.337s
5 Matt NEAL (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +7.012s
6 Colin TURKINGTON (GBR) Team BMW +9.615s
7 Rory BUTCHER (GBR) Cobra Sport AmD AutoAid/RCIB Insurance +10.541s
8 Andrew JORDAN (GBR) BMW Pirtek Racing +11.168s
9 Adam MORGAN (GBR) Mac Tools with Ciceley Motorsport +12.475s
10 Dan CAMMISH (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +12.856s
Stephen Jelley was penalised by the addition of 0.6 seconds to his overall race time for an incident involving Aiden Moffat.
Ash Sutton was penalised by means of a five-place grid penalty for Round 12 following an incident involving Chris Smiley. His licence was also endorsed by the addition of three penalty points
Chris Smiley has been penalised by means of a five-place grid penalty for Round 13 following an incident involving Jack Goff. His licence was also endorsed by the addition of three penalty points