LLOYD MAINTAINS PERFECT TCR UK SCORE IN SECOND KNOCKHILL RACE
Daniel Lloyd continued his dream start to the TCR UK Series with victory in the reversed-grid second race at Knockhill, coming through from ninth on the grid to take his fourth win of the year ahead of Josh Price and Sean Walkinshaw.
Walkinshaw started the race on pole position and led heading into Turn 1, but the Hyundai of Lewis Kent got an even stronger start from the second row of the grid and immediately made a move into Taylor’s Hairpin, with slight contact allowing Kent into the lead. Further back Team BMR’s Josh Price, who had started from sixth, got past Walkinshaw for second on lap four, and immediately set about slashing Kent’s early lead. On lap seven Kent made a mistake at Turn 1, gifting Price the lead, although the Honda driver would only be at the front of the field for four laps.
Championship leader Lloyd had been making steady progress in the early phase of the race, moving up to sixth by the end of the first lap and into second by lap eight. On lap 11 Lloyd got a superior exit from Turn 1 and passed Price for the lead heading towards Turns 2 and 3 with a clean pass.
Lloyd had opened up a lead of over two seconds by lap 23 when the safety car was required to clear up the damaged Honda of Ollie Taylor. The Pyro Motorsport driver had spent much of the first half of the race running seventh, before stepping up a gear heading into the final third of the race. Whilst trying to pass WestCoast Racing’s Jessica Bäckman for fourth at Turn 1 the two cars made contact and title contender Taylor was out of the race with broken steering. The incident will be investigated after the race.
With the clock continuing to count down there was only time for one more racing lap when the action resumed, and Lloyd went early to build enough of a lead to take his fourth win of 2018. Price ultimately settled for second, ahead of Walkinshaw in third, giving the latter’s fledgling team a maiden podium in TCR. DW Racing’s Darelle Wilson was fourth, with the Vauxhall Astra racer almost securing a podium finish after pressuring Walkinshaw late in the race.
The Bäckman siblings finished in fifth and sixth, with Andreas ahead of sister Jessica respectively. Both WestCoast Racing cars were involved in fierce battles during the race, with their Volkswagen Golf GTi cars bearing the scars of multiple contacts at the end as the Knockhill circuit once again delivered close battles. Derek Palmer once again had to fly the flag for the Laser Tools Racing team and finished in seventh, as team-mate Aiden Moffat failed to make the start with a different failure to the driveshaft issue that took him out of the running in race one.
Lewis Kent completed the finishers in eighth, two laps down after tyre issues struck during the race.
Another two victories mean Lloyd leaves Scotland with a 66-point lead over Andreas Bäckman in second, with Taylor a further seven points behind in third.
Dan Lloyd (1st): “It was good fun. I planned to take that race quite safe, but you’ve got to capitalise on stuff when it’s there and that’s what I did. I had a good start and then just settled down and got going, so it’s an awesome result.
“I got past Josh and my pace was great, but to be honest the tyres started dropping off quite a bit, so I was a bit gutted to see the safety car again. I had in my mind what I was going to do at the restart and really took off again.
“If you make one small mistake coming over the hill you’re a sitting duck into the first corner, so it had to be absolutely perfect. I planned to go really early in the middle of the chicane in first gear and to get the pull up the hill and it worked perfectly.“Big thanks to the WestCoast Racing boys this weekend as they’ve done job an amazing job putting in so much hard work.”
Josh Price (2nd): “It was a good race. I got a good start compared to the drivers in front of me. I saw Dan coming and he was just so quick. We didn’t really have the pace to keep with him – he just looked really comfortable and was out there on his own.
“I saw them [Walkinshaw and Wilson] under the safety car. I didn’t think I’d have a shot of going for the win for Dan, so I saved the car and tried to get a gap off the line to make sure that we could get around the first corner. It’s a great reward for the team putting that engine in at the last minute.
“It’s good – it’s got everything you want. You’ve got clean racing and the cars are quite close to be able to race fairly and competitively so it is a good series and I’m sure I’ll be coming back.”
Sean Walkinshaw (3rd): “It was definitely an interesting race. After Turn 1 I thought it could be a bit over, I lost quite a few places there, but I slowly got into a rhythm, built my confidence up and slowly picked off some of the other quick cars in front.
“Obviously we got a gap to fourth place and the guys in front had just cleared off so I was just in a nice rhythm by myself for a little bit. The safety car came out a bit at the wrong time but I’m still really happy with P3.
“I think at the restart it was one of the VWs, and down the straights we’re a bit slow this weekend, so I was defending straight on and taking the inside line. But it was OK. I was a little bit worried about Wilson, but I managed to get a few good corners and built a little bit of a gap in the last sector which was nice.
“We’ve been on the podium after only the second round of us going into touring cars which is fantastic. Hopefully Howard will be back in the car at the third round and can continue our momentum and get a few higher places.”