TCR UK & CO GO DOWN TO THE WIRE AT DONINGTON PARK THIS WEEKEND
The final weekend of the season for the BRSCC and its Midlands Crntre sees the conclusion of the second TCR UK Championship as well as the Dunlop Touring Car Trophy, with a multitude of other championships and series also ready to round off the 2019 season. Donington Park’s National circuit lends itself to incredible season finales, let alone brilliant racing, so this year’s traditional Finals Weekend should be no exception.
The main event sees the TCR UK title boil down to just two men as Lewis Kent and James Turkington look set to battle it out and lock horns for the final time this year. Both have taken races wins and had their fair share of dramas, and now 19 points separate the pair in Turkington’s favour. James would dearly love to add a touring car title to the family collection alongside Colin’s success, while Kent will be gunning for success in a year that’s had plenty of standout moments, both good and back. While that contest goes on, we’ll expect to see regulars Henry Neal, Alex Day, Nick Halstead and Darelle Wilson make an appearance once more, along with some possible new additions to the grid for the final rounds.
It looks like it’s going to be another nailbiting conclusion to the Mazda MX-5 Supercup, as yet again the fate of the title goes down to the last race weekend of the season. Luke Herbert will be gunning for his third straight title in a row, while Jack Harding will be desperate to clinch the title he’s so narrowly missed out on the past three seasons. There’s a 10 point margin for Harding to make up, which he could bridge – provided in an ideal situation he wins all three races with the fastest lap, allowing him to outscore Herbert by at least four points each race and eventually win the title by as little as two points. But it’s never as simple as that! Aidan Hills is a slightly distant 3rd and an outside bet for the title, but he would need a monumental stroke of luck in order to steal it. That said, never say never. Watch out for Patrick Fletcher, Simon Baldwin, Gary Towsent and Will Stephenson to score strong results too.
Saturday will be see the second ever BRSCC Clubsport Trophy race take place with the new series riding on the crest of a wave after a sell out debut at Brands Hatch a couple of months ago. Once again, the grid is at capacity with 40 cars of all shapes and sizes ready to do battle across the five class structure. While there’s a healthy mix of cars from the BRSCC Mazda, Compact Cup and Civic Cup paddocks, other cars including Stuart Jefcoate’s Porsche 911, the Ford Capri of Mark Thomas, Will and Henry Sharpe’s MG ZR and the unique Caterham 21 of David Fender will make for interesting sights on track. At Brands Hatch the win was settled on the last corner of the last lap – will we see the same happen here?
The fate of the Disklok Civic Cup title has already been settled in favour of Lee Deegan, as his efforts at Silverstone were enough to put it out of reach of his rivals. However, there’s still plenty to fight for in Sunday’s two races as six drivers get ready to rumble for the coveted runner up spot in the standings. It’s a straight fight between Daniel Reason, Jason Ballantyne, Daniel Hobson, Bruce Winfield, David Buky and Alistair Camp, all of whom have tasted their own level of success throughout their year. Of course, six into one doesn’t go, so something has to give and only one can be end up second best to Deegan, but with the entire field being ultra-competitive, it’s going to be a thrilling conclusion nonetheless.
The same can be said about the Nankang Tyres BMW Compact Cup, with dropped scores coming into play and three drivers heading to Donington Park still in with a shout of the 2019 title. While Tom Griffiths leads the way from Ian Jones and double champion Steven Dailly on total accrued points, it’s a different story on dropped scores as Griffiths and Dailly swap places with the Scotsman taking up an 18 point lead over Jones with Griffiths a further 7 points back in 3rd. This means that as long as Dailly performs well this weekend, the third English title will sit nicely alongside his other two accolades as well as his Scottish crown from a few years ago. Matthew Parkes, Mikey Doble, Keith Towers and more will also be ones to watch on a sold out grid for the finale. Compact Cup usually puts on a spectacular show wherever it races, so don’t miss this!
There’s a bumper entry for the final race of the season for the Alfa Romeo Championship, with just over 20 cars expected to turn out for the deciding races of the year. Tom Hill and Dave Messenger are locked in a duel for the overall title as well as their own Twin Spark Cup and Power Trophy class accolades. Graham Seager leads the Modified entry in his Alfa GTV with Thomas Waite, Bryan Shrubb and George Osborne as his main contenders, Paul Webster and Ron Davidson will be keen to pick up Power Trophy honours amongst others and an increased Twin Spark Cup contingent looks set to include Paul Plant, Kevin Gallagher, Ciprian Nistorica, former champion Andrew Bourke and Simon Cresswell.
The final rounds of the Toyo Tires Porsche Championship are set to feature both a regular 20 minute race and an extended 40 minute pit stop race, something tried by the championship before with great success. Incredibly, Andrew Porter’s recent success in the Supersport Boxster class has helped him to grab the points lead from long-time leader Garry Lawrence with just 2.5 points separating them going to the final weekend. Lawrence will have help from Richard Avery as his co-driver in the pit stop race, with Nick Hull, former champion Ed Hayes, Leigh Bowden and Anthony Hutchins expected to be in the mix. Peter Smith has a Class D lead to defend in the 924s, with Chris Valentine and John Jones set to give him the most competition, while Andrew Baker and Patrick Kenneally share a Invitation class Boxster to add to the grid.
The final BRSCC OSS Championship races of the season should see long time points leader Patrick Sherrington seal the deal both overall and in Class A aboard his MCR, and he’ll especially be keen to rebound from a weekend at Silverstone which saw him battle endless technical problems. That weekend was a clean sweep for the first time for former champion Mike Jenvey and he returns to claim glory for himself if he can get to the front once again. Norman Lackford, Nicolaj Lindberg, Alastair Smart and Robert Gillman are also expected to play their parts.
Finally, guest action on the timetable comes from our friends at the Track Attack Race Club, with he Nippon Challenge, Tricolore Trophy and Multi Marques all set to do battle on track. This should mostly be a superb mix of French and Japanese machinery with Hondas, Mazdas, Peugeots, Renaults and more ready to duke it out for class honours. Don’t miss it!
There will also be a pair of sampler track sessions at the end of Sunday for the Fiesta Junior Championship racing with MRF Tyres, as the potential next generation of young chargers try out what could be their next race car!