Highs and lows at Oulton Park for Pirtek Racing
News release date: Monday 11 June 2012
Two storming second places followed by an accident caused by another driver made it a day of highs and lows for Andrew Jordan and Pirtek Racing at the Oulton Park circuit in Cheshire over the weekend (9/10 June) in rounds 10, 11 and 12 of the 2012 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship.
Andrew put a marker down for the weekend with a mighty qualifying performance, even though his Honda Civic only ended the session fourth fastest. However, he was fastest of all in the first and third sectors of the lap, only to be held up by a slower car in the middle sector. Even then, he was just 0.179s off pole. “Qualifying should have been pole by a tenth or two,” he reported.
In Sunday’s opening race, run in front of another packed Oulton Park crowd, Andrew battled through to second after passing Rob Collard’s BMW into the Hairpin. Up ahead was Matt Neal and Andrew set off to try and challenge Neal. “I then gave chase after Matt and we’d got better pace because he’d got success ballast. I just couldn’t find a gap. But we needed a good points’ haul, so second place was good.”
A couple of hours later he repeated the result, this time finishing second to Neal’s team mate Gordon Shedden. “Going up to Druids, I was tucked in behind Matt who had a problem in a straight line, so I hesitated. That gave Shedden the run on me and he went by,” said Andrew, who was now running fourth. However, Mat Jackson and Collard clashed and both went out, so Andrew was back up to second.
“I chased Shedden, but we had more weight by then and it hurt in the last few laps,” he said. “In the middle of the race I thought I had enough pace to have a go at him, but the last few laps hurt the front tyres a bit. But it was another good result and made two overall seconds and two Independent wins, which moved us up to fourth in the championship.
“For the third race we had a slight problem with the power steering so I thought if we could get in the top six that would be okay,” said Andrew. “I got eighth place in the grid draw and I was probably on target for the top six until Collard had a lunge down the inside at Old Hall. I gave him room because I saw him coming, but I think he carried too much speed into the corner and he ran me off the track on the exit of the corner and I hit the wall. It was quite a hard hit and it did quite a lot of damage. It was a bad end to what had been a really good day. It’s frustrating, but we’re still leading the Independents’ Trophy.”