Ronan Pearson signs off successful rookie campaign
Ronan Pearson (BRISTOL STREET MOTORS with EXCELR8) brought the curtain down on his rookie season in the 2023 Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship with a solid weekend at Brands Hatch (7/8 October).
The Kelty-based youngster went into the season finale hoping to maintain the impressive form he had shown since the summer break, and on a run of eight points finishes in nine starts.
Having never previously driven his Hyundai i30N around the iconic Brands GP circuit, the focus through free practice was on gaining valuable experience ahead of qualifying, with the young Scot going into the session aiming to push towards the top ten.
Whilst P14 was lower than he would have hoped for, his time was little over a tenth of a second away from tenth spot, and only half a second off a place on the front row.
Eager to add to his points tally in the opening race, Pearson would instead find himself struggling, with an end result of him slipping down the order as the race wore on to finish back in 20th place.
The team worked hard to make changes to the car ahead of race two, but Pearson would be unable to benefit when an incident on the opening lap led to his retirement.
The heavy damage meant he was out on the spot and left his BRISTOL STREET MOTORS with EXCELR8 team with plenty of work to do to repair the Hyundai i30N in time for race three.
Despite the disappointment, Pearson had one final race to show his impressive pace and conclude a hugely encouraging rookie campaign with another positive result.
Taking his place right at the back, Pearson charged through the pack into the points by the half-way stage and although he would be knocked back a spot by newly-crowned champion Ash Sutton, P16 capped a solid end to the weekend.
Pearson said: “It’s been a bit of a funny weekend to end the season. Normally I’d have said P14 on the grid was a bit disappointing, but around the GP circuit, I was pleased with the result because we’d worked really hard through practice to improve the car and I knew there was still more to come.
“I felt confident going into the opening race but we just didn’t have the pace from about the ninth lap. The team worked hard to get on top of that, but we couldn’t see how the car would work with the changes because of what happened in race two.
“The team worked its socks off again to get me out for race three and I really wanted to get a result for them and we came close to a point, but just missed out. It was a tough way to end the season but it’s fair to say that I’ve really lived the dream this year and I cannot thank everyone who has been involved enough. It’s been an incredible experience, and this is only the start.”