Lewis Kent would further extend his lead atop the Goodyear Touring Car Trophy / TCR UK standings after winning the final race of the Oulton Park weekend. The Hyundai i30 N TCR was unchallenged for much of proceedings, surviving an early technical issue that saw his door swung open mid-race. Slamming it shut along the straight, the Essex & Kent Motorsport driver leaves the weekend with 201 points, 53 ahead of nearest rival Max Hart.
There was high drama for both the Essex & Kent Motorsport drivers at the start of the race, as first Bradley Kent had to take to pits while the cars were lining up, costing him a fourth place grid position, then Lewis Kent, shortly after the race start found his passenger side door flapping open.
Weaving down the straight would fix the defending TCR UK champions issue, but for Bradley, he found himself at the back and a lap down after the team had reset his sensor issue. While the car was sorted for the rest of the race, it ruined his weekend.
A dire start for polesitter Dan Kirby saw him drop into the midfield ensuring that it would end up Lewis Kent leading as the fast-starting Alex Morgan joined him in second place. Kent had gapped the Cupra in the early stages, but the TCR Europe race winner was clearly no slouch, holding the gap at a consistent 1.3 second gap.
It would quickly settle into a four-car battle as Max Hart and Jac Constable joined the train. Kent though was happy to control the pace as Hart set his sights on making his way past the Power Maxed blockade.
On lap eight, Krywyj’s promising weekend ended abruptly with a mechanical issue at Clay Hill. He wasn’t the only one though, as race one winner Constable came to a stop at the chicane. The Power Maxed Racing driver would get going again, but by then was outside the top ten, the heat of the Cheshire countryside taking it out on the cars.
The action of the day soon turned to Alex Morgan and Max Hart. Gradually catching Morgan over the course of the race, Hart wanted to close in on Lewis Kent before it was too late, making a smart move into Fosters. Morgan knew better than to blindly defend and it proved fruitful as Hart got onto the dust at Hislops half a lap later, sliding sideways through Knickerbrook which let Morgan back through for a second place finish.
Despite early door issues, Kent would lead home quite a comfortable victory, taking the flag 4.5 seconds ahead of Alex Morgan, as Hart completed the podium. Dan Kirby would finish fourth ensuring that he leapfrogs Bradley Kent in the standings and remains in strong contention for second place overall, just seven points behind Hart.
In fifth would be Bruce Winfield after another solid drive for the Area Motorsport driver, while Jack Depper inherited sixth after Andy Wilmot picked up a five second penalty for track limits. The Volkswagen Golf TCR had been strong all day and Depper was pleased to win the battle of the VW Cup protagonists on his debut weekend. Wilmot, the 2020 champion of VW Cup, returned this weekend with a new Cupra TCR SEQ and will be eager to show it off more in the final two rounds.
Darron Lewis brought the TCT-spec Mercedes A Class NGTC to a comfortable eighth place after his mechanical issues in the opening encounter, while Hugo Cook finished ninth ahead of William Butler. Constable and Bradley Kent rounded out the order.
An elated Lewis Kent spoke after the race, saying;
“I didn’t expect that today. We came into the weekend with a slight crack in one seals of the clutch, which kept on dropping oil into the clutch itself. So every time I changed up it slipped, so yeah, it’s been a bit of a issue this weekend. Hopefully by Anglesey we should have the seals all fixed and back to my normal pace.
“I’ve raced against Alex [Morgan] before in Europe and back here in the UK, so we know each other well. It’s great news for us and more points for my championship as I’ve extended my lead over Max [Hart] even more. It really shows the true pace which we have and how far we’ve come as a team in order to work past these issues, even from drivers who have Europe as well, I can’t believe we’ve come away with a win.”
Remember that you can watch all the sessions back on the TCR UK YouTube page. Keep up with the Goodyear Touring Car Trophy social media for further championship updates and driver interviews from our Oulton Park stars. The next weekend is at Anglesey on Sunday 8th August 2021.
Results can be found on TSL Timing