Podium celebrations in North Yorkshire for Halfords Racing with Cataclean
Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship squad Halfords Racing with Cataclean enjoyed its second victory of the 2022 campaign at Croft last month (25/26 June) as it continues its hunt for glory in Britain’s premier motorsport series.
Saturday’s qualifying session at the North Yorkshire venue saw both Gordon Shedden and Dan Rowbottom secure top-five positions for Sunday’s opener, with Rowbottom producing a season-best qualifying session taking second on the grid, and the pair prepared to move forward and add to their points tally during the trio of contests ahead of them.
Round 13 proved to be a mixed affair for the Droitwich-based outfit, as Shedden’s race came to an unfortunate end on the first lap when contact with a rival and the resulting damage to his Honda Civic Type R saw him forced to retire.
His team-mate would lose a place into the first corner as Dan Lloyd’s Hyundai snuck past and a race-long battle ensued to retain that final podium spot, with Rowbottom holding onto third to the chequered flag.
An impressive drive from Shedden in the second bout saw the Scotsman scythe his way through the field from the back of the pack to clinch 12th, while Rowbottom drove the #32 machine to fifth and another haul of points.
From pole position by virtue of the reverse grid draw, the final contest saw Shedden produce a lights-to-flag victory, quickly building up a gap to the chasing pack and holding the lead throughout the 15-lap encounter.
Rowbottom would hold seventh spot for much of the race, but a puncture on the penultimate lap saw his weekend prematurely drawn to a close.
“Wow, what a day!” buoyed Shedden. “The car felt strong from free practice, and I was just in the wrong place at the wrong time in race one. That would typically ruin your day, but the red mist descended in race two and early contact was the spark to get me firing through the field. I just kept on pushing and lap after lap I was moving through the pack.
“In the third race, I got a good lead from the off and could see they were all scrapping behind me, so I just managed my lap times, kept a healthy buffer and brought it over the line in P1 – mega!”
“Again, a strong start to the weekend with P2 in qualifying,” added Rowbottom. “The race pace was there and I fought hard all weekend, but the luck just wasn’t on my side again in race three and I got a puncture with just one lap to go! But I have to be pleased with a third and a fifth as it gives me some great points”
Both Shedden and Rowbottom hold top ten positions in the Drivers’ Standings – with seventh and tenth respectively – as they turn their attention to next week’s Goodyear Tyre Test (12/13 July), while Halfords Racing with Cataclean sits fifth in the Teams’ title chase.
Little over three weeks remain of the series’ annual summer break before the squad heads to Shedden’s home circuit of Knockhill (30/31 July) with the race day action broadcast across both ITV and ITV4.