The new Mk VI Golf GTI in action at Rockingham. Photo: Jakob Ebrey Photography.

Fresh from its best track showing to date, Europe’s newest racing Volkswagen looks set to end its maiden season of competition on a high note. In only its third weekend of racing, the Volkswagen Racing UK-developed Mk VI Golf GTI sped to its maiden pole position at Rockingham, and only narrowly missed out on a podium finish.

Driven by saloon ace Nick Beaumont, the new Golf posted sixth and fourth-place finishes in the latest rounds of the Volkswagen Racing Cup with FUCHS Lubricants and, says Nick, there is plenty more to come.

“The new Golf has been a challenge,” adds Beaumont. “We have been developing the car in front of people at the circuits with nothing to hide. The first time the car ran was the Monday before the Brands Hatch race weekend in June, with very good results from the start – the potential was there to be seen in the car.

“Then we went to Zandvoort and found some time in the car, but not enough. For Rockingham the team made a very big step forward to make the Golf very competitive right from the first test on Friday afternoon; this was a shock to a few people in the pit lane. From then on we were really able to show the potential that we knew was there from the outset.”

The Mk VI Golf differs from the previous model in many key areas, not least the engine, which is a completely new 2.0-litre turbocharged unit which Volkswagen Racing UK has, with the assistance of Superchips, tuned to produce 250bhp.

“The new engine has very good torque and delivers the power well and, combined with the chassis modifications, it really is a completely new race car, the next generation of Golf GTI, and I believe it will win many races and, in the future, the championship,” says Nick.

Volkswagen Racing UK Director Melissa Wright says the Mk VI – which races in livery celebrating 35 years of the Golf GTI – is a welcome addition to the grid of the Volkswagen Racing Cup with FUCHS Lubricants: “We are delighted to embrace the new Golf because its technology is exactly that which buyers of new showroom Volkswagen models find in their cars.

“The technology within the Mk V Golf, which is a favourite with many competitors, is 10 years old now, and the Mk VI will take over. That said, older models of Volkswagen will always be welcome in the championship because diversity is one of its many attractions.”

Volkswagen Racing UK is now able to offer customer versions of the Mk VI Golf GTI. Dependant on the specification required, pricing of the conversion work required to turn a road car into a track version is around £20,000.

The new Golf will next be in action, in Beaumont’s hands, at the end of September at Donington Park.

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