Hot stuff – Team BC Racing storm the podium at Oulton Park
The UK may be in the grip of an unprecedented heatwave, but that barely flickered on the radar of the Time Attack and Drift Pro guys in the run-up to round 5 of the 2022 series. Let’s face it, these folks are sweating it out at the bleeding edge of performance every day, week in, week out, and following their myriad recent successes, team BC Racing were champing at the bit to get out there and take advantage of that sticky tarmac.
Saturday 16th July was the date, Oulton Park was the venue, and the action was hotter than ever as the spectators gazed upon the on-track antics, their Cornettos melting forgotten in their hands as the competition unfolded at breakneck pace.
The Drift Pro battles proved to be well inside Ollie Evans’ wheelhouse, his Nissan S14 balletically scything across the competition through the top-16, top-8, top-4, and finally the hotly contested final. A slightly confusing finale saw his battle competitor, Josh King, set off first and thus gifted the win to Ollie on a technicality, but whichever way it went down, this was always destined to be a stellar weekend for Ollie. His skills impressed all day, as ever, and he efficiently and stylishly got on with the business of doing what Ollie Evans does: winning.
Similarly impressive to behold was Michael Andrew’s performance over in Time Attack’s Club 2WD class. Taking first place, this was a five-from-five victory – and although his superlative talent in the Civic can make this look easy, he was battling hard in the little Honda sweatbox as the competition became ever-more fierce: Chris Williams’ rival Civic was sparring for glory, the head-to-head of a B16 turbo pitted against a supercharged K20 making for a magnificent aural spectacle for the crowds, and in the end Michael sauntered from the tough battle with top honours.
It was a truly impressive outing for Chris too; after a difficult start to the season, Oulton Park saw him thankfully able to get out on track in a fully working car. Initially a non-starter due to hitting 122db on the noise test, the exhaust was quickly sorted and saw Chris back where he belongs. And we saw the car not just operating as ‘fully working’, but serving up something truly devastating for the competition. Michael may have pipped him to the top spot of the podium, but Chris’s solid 2nd place serves to prove just how high the quality is within Team BC Racing. World-class stuff, and hugely entertaining to watch. The Civic battle is on the for the remaining rounds!
There were one or two dramas along the way, as is always the case in the smoky crucible of motorsport. Michael Blenkinsop’s Integra suffered a clutch failure in the first warm-up session, thus rendering the car out of commission for the remainder of the event, while Sam Pickering’s Impreza stripped 6th gear – he tried to remove the shrapnel and continue with five gears, although the front diff also suffered some damage which put an end to his chances… this time. Rest assured, these fellas will be back out with something to prove on the next round.
In the Pro Extreme class, Tim Bedford was fettling throughout the day to optimise the suspension setup on his ever-impressive Impreza, in order to get the very best out of the car on this challenging circuit. Events conspired to stymie his best efforts in the final, as he found himself caught up in traffic in a session that was shortened to seven minutes; nevertheless, his 3rd-place finish was enough to keep those championship hopes alive, and we’ll look forward to seeing the full potential of this matchmade car-and-driver pairing in future rounds. So now we count down to August 29th, when round 6 will be held in the verdant splendour and winding curves of Donington Park.
GALLERY | Images by BeasyMedia