Oulton Park 2021 - drama, crashes and then more drama and more crashes!
Saturday started wet and miserable at the Cheshire circuit, soggy conditions for Free Practice session 1 and drier for the second session. However the vital qualifying session later in the afternoon was perfectly dry. Despite the mixed weather Laser Tools Racing gained a lot of useful data in the mixed conditions.
The qualifying session finished with team results (and thus starting positions for Race 1 on the Sunday) of Ash Sutton 10th, Aiden Moffat 12th and Carl Boardley 19th.
The race started with a good getaway for all three of our drivers but disaster on lap 1: Ash and Colin Turkington tangled and ended up on the grass, putting both drivers at the back of the pack. Aiden meantime was having a blast and made up five places on that first lap! Carl also made up two places.
Aiden then went 6th on lap 3 as Ash pitted to clear his radiator with Carl holding his own in 17th. Ash then started to get the hammer down until on lap 6 there was a huge crash involving Tom Oliphant and others which brought out a red flag.
After the race restart Carl and Ash were really on a mission and at the end of the first lap Aiden was 6th, Carl was 11th and Ash was 18th. On the next lap Ash was up to 16th and at race finish it was Aiden in 6th, Carl in 11th and Ash 14th.
Race 2 of the Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship started late after delays caused by the first BTCC race running late then several major crashes in the subsequent Mini Challenge race. After a good start from all of the boys it was great to see an incident free first lap for Race 2. Indeed, by the end of the lap it was Aiden in 6th, Ash in 12th and Carl up in 13th. Lap 2 and Ash was really on it as he ended the lap in 9th.
On lap 5, Ash was able to move up a place to 8th, Whilst Aiden was having a great race in 6th and Carl was up to 10th. There were battles for all three of our drivers, but the pace of the Infinitis was there once again. As we ended an incident free race we were really pleased with our performances with Aiden 6th, Ash 8th and Carl 11th. In the reverse grid the number 9 was picked and so for the final race of the day Ash will be on P2, Aiden will be P5 and Carl will in P11. Strong results for the team!
As the cars left the start line it was all action and then the news – a red flag caused by a crash just after the first corner and involved in that, and out of the race was our championship leader Ash Sutton. The race was restarted on the original grid with a few spaces where people were missing including Ash and title rival Tom Ingram. Aidan was in 4th place on the road and Carl still in his starting spot. Aiden then spent the rest of the race in a consistent and very fast 4th position but was unable to make any ground on the top 3. Carl was having a real battle in the midfield and ended up 14th.
So where does that leave us after four Championships meets? The great news is that Ash still leads the Driver's Championship by 5 points from Tom Ingram and 12 points from Dan Rowbottom. In the Team's Championship Laser Tools Racing are leading the way by 6 points from Halfords Racing with Cataclean and 38 points from BTC racing in 3rd. In the Independent Team's Championship, Laser Tools Racing are 3 points ahead of Halfords and then it is Ginsters EXELER8 a further11 points behind. So all in all, not a bad weekend for the team and we stay at the top of the table as we head to Knockhill in two weeks time. As always, we’ll bring you all of the action as it happens.
Photo Gallery: Oulton Park 2021