Max Hart led the field home for his first race victory of the year at Silverstone. Dealing with the pressure from defending champion Lewis Kent behind, Hart remained cool and calm, picking up where he left off at Donington Park last winter.
Starting on pole, Hart made the most of his position in the Hyundai i30 N TCR, retaining the lead as the cars filed through into Village.
Starting in ninth, Bruce Winfield had it all to gain in the Cupra TCR. Sadly for the Area Motorsport driver, he was instead caught up in the drama, picking up a puncture after contact with Will Powell. He wasn’t the only competitor in the wars as Bradley Kent was forced to retire after picking up a puncture on the warm-up lap, leaving just one Essex & Kent Motorsport driver in the thick of the action.
A safety car to deal with a stationary VW Cup car only briefly stopped Hart’s domination, dropping Lewis Kent at the restart, pulling out a 3 second gap in the early stages.
A reverse in fortunes soon welcomed the chasing, Lewis Kent. The Maximum Motorsport encountered a window issue that distracting Hart’s performance for a few laps and allowing Kent to close back up the time he’d lost. His best opportunity occurred when the pair were lapping the Volkswagen Racing Cup cars, as Hart left Kent stuck going the long way round Jeff Alden and resetting the momentum of the chase.
Pulling away from the third-place car, Darron Lewis was keen to stamp his authority on the battle for best of the rest. The Mercedes A Class NGTC fell back at the start, as Dan Kirby looked to re-emerge as a championship threat. Kirby could not maintain his pace throughout though, quickly losing his tyres and allowing the Team HARD car through to take his first series podium.
Kirby had been on course to finish fifth, however struck gold in the final turn as Simpson Motorsport’s Hugo Cook slowed on the approach to the finish. A technical problem ending what would have been a memorable drive to fourth overall, having just enough power to roll over the line in fifth ahead of the closing William Butler. Butler though will be rewarded with reverse grid pole for race two.
It would be the fight for seventh that provided the closest racing on track throughout. New to front-wheel drive cars, Jac Constable was eager to get his claws into the action, keeping pace with his teammates for much of the action. The second half of his race though was characterised by his battle with Toby Bearne. The Mercedes A Class, with its wider wheelbase had a tyre advantage in the latter stages, giving the 26-year-old a chance to hound the Cupra TCR. Constable though remained resilient, hanging on to seventh.
In his first race weekend, Danny Krywyj will be satisfied to finish ninth as Bruce Winfield rounded out the finishing cars a lap down after his earlier skirmish.
Speaking afterwards, Hart said;
“Lewis started catching me as my tyres went off, so I became more and more conscious about minding my tyre life, especially the front left. As a result, I made a few changes in my driving especially towards Stowe where I was losing rear a lot. So, then we managed to keep the gap, keep working on it.”
Commenting on the mid-race disturbance, he said; “It was something in the footwell of the car which came loose at the start, but it’s gone now,” he laughed.
About the event
With teams based in the Grand Prix paddock and Wing pit complex, the new-look Maximum Networks Volkswagen Racing Cup and Goodyear Touring Car Trophy and TCR UK season is set for a spectacular start.
The second race starts at 15.30. Live streamed on our Facebook:
Sunday’s meeting is administered by the BARC and utilises Silverstone’s 1.851-mile International circuit configuration.
For further championship details visit: