Close, exciting racing netted an impressive points haul for Laser Tools Racing at a sunny Silverstone!
The first practice session on the Saturday morning was conducted on a misty and grey circuit, but the driving from the Laser Tools Racing drivers was consistent with Aiden 3rd fastest and Ash in 4th.
The weather had cleared by the second practice session when Aiden’s car started to experience brake problems. Luckily these were resolved by the afternoon’s all-important qualifying session. This session was of the “Top Ten Shoot-out” format where the top ten drivers from a shortened 20-minute qualifying session are given an addition 10-minute session to decide the grid positions for Race 1 on the Sunday. Aiden and Ash were both in the top ten with third LTR driver Carl Boardley achieving a respectable 16th.
In the brief but hectic top-ten shoot-out session, it was Ash who fired things up first by going P4, but as the clocks ticked down, others got quicker. It looked like we were going to end up towards the bottom of the top 10 when Aiden nailed it and finished in 3rd place for Sunday’s first race and Ash finished 8th, a fantastic result for the team.
Was this the last day of summer? Certainly felt like it. With our great positions in the various championships (drivers, teams, etc) there was definitely a strategy here to protect our positions and score the maximum number of points safely in Race 1. The risks of a big crash and missing races and points later in the afternoon was probably too great and so preservation would be the order of the day.
Off the line it was Aiden who was overtaken for 3rd place by Dan Lloyd in the lighter car. Aiden was very comfortable in 4th and was able to stay there without challenge throughout a largely uneventful race. Ash was able to get up to 7th, but despite looking slightly faster than Colin Turkington and Josh Cook in front of him, he harried them looking for a mistake, but it didn’t come. Ash was clearly happy with his 7th place at the flag and Carl was going well and got up to 15th and into the points.
With Aiden in 4th, Ash in 6th and Carl in 15th the team were in fighting mood. Off the line all three got a good start and were very comfortable holding position.
There was then a period where everyone was holding position until two safety cars upset the plans for tyre wear. With 5 laps to go, Colin Turkington was able to take Aiden for 4th and at the end, Aiden was 5th and Ash was 6th. Carl was cruelly denied a good race when on lap 14 he was hit at the first corner and lost a couple of laps in the pits before getting back on track. The rear bodywork was quite badly damaged though and Carl came back in to the garage to give his team more time to get it repaired before Race 3.
After the reverse grid was drawn at number 11, the starting positions for Race 3 were Aiden in 6th, Ash in 7th and Carl in 26th.
At the customary Q&A session after Race 2 at the Laser Tools racing hospitality unit our three BTCC drivers were joined by our new Formula Ford racer Logan Hannah, who introduced herself and explained her plans for the remainder of the 2021 season.
This was another great last race where Hill and Lloyd blasted off into the distance and had a battle all of their own to the line with Jake Hill winning. Behind them we had the action. Aiden drove an outstanding race to finish 7th, Carl improved from 23rd to 19th, but Ash was the star. First he took Colin Turkington and Aiden to move up to 6th. He then systematically picked off those above him, Jason Plato, Stephen Jelley and in the closing stages Chris Smiley to finish on the podium in a brilliant 3rd. Another podium for Ash!
What a final race, what a day and what a weekend for the Laser Tools Racing team and all three of our drivers. Everyone got to take some silverware and we won 7 of the available racing trophies in the BTCC this weekend.
What has this meant for the various championships?
- Driver’s Championship – Ash in 1st place with a 36 point lead.
- Driver’s Championship – Aiden now up to 6th
- Independent Driver’s Championship - Ash in 1st place with a 31 point lead.
- Independent Driver’s Championship - Aiden in 4th place now.
- Independent Driver’s Championship - Carl in 15th
- Team’s Championship – Laser Tools Racing lead by 72.
- Independent Team’s Championship – Laser Tools Racing lead by 34 points
- Jack Sears Trophy – Carl is in 3rd
All of this bodes well as we head to Donington Park in two weeks for round 9 of the Championship. It’s been a fabulous weekend, so thank you Silverstone.