Having elected to return to the BTCC this season for his first full season since 2006, James Kaye has emerged as the man to beat in the Super 2000 class.
The AmDTuning.com team will aim to move into the outright lead of the Jack Sears Trophy when the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship heads for Thruxton this weekend for the third round of the year.
The West Thurrock-based team clinched its second victory amongst the Jack Sears Trophy runners at Donington Park last time out, although it proved to be a mixed weekend after the race one win was followed by a pair of retirements – with an accident in race two putting the team’s turbo-powered VW Golf out within seconds of the start, and an electrical issue while leading race three preventing the team adding to its tally.
James will now hope to benefit from that performance at the fastest circuit on the calendar, although he admits that the weekend ahead won’t be easy thanks to the unique challenges that the Hampshire venue will provide.
“While it was a shame that we couldn’t add to the race one win at Donington last time out, we showed strong pace all weekend,” he said. “However, Thruxton is going to be a huge challenge as it is different to every other circuit that we visit on the calendar and I haven’t driven there for something like eight years.
“We’ve not had the chance to test at Thruxton and because of the high speeds, it’s a circuit that you have to treat with the utmost respect; it’s a place where high speed and high drama is the order of the day. It’s not a circuit where it is easy to get back up to speed when you’ve not been there for a while because it is so different.
There are times when the line you think would be the best one to take isn’t actually the best because of the bumps there are on the track surface, so it’ll all be about re-learning the circuit as quickly as I can when practice gets underway.
“Thruxton is very much a power circuit and with some boost changes that have been made to the S2000 cars since Donington, the odds would seem to be stacked against us. However, that won’t stop us pushing hard to come away from the weekend with three strong results.”
Team boss Shaun Hollamby agreed that Thruxton would be a challenging weekend for the team, but said he was confident that the Golf would once again be able to run at the sharp end of the Jack Sears Trophy entrants.
“The car has been fully repaired after the accident at Donington Park and the electrical problem we had has also been resolved, so we’re ready and raring to go at Thruxton,” he said. “We’ve got some new suspension mods to try out this weekend, but the boost calculations following the first two rounds have given us a relative reduction in boost compared to our rivals, so we need to see how we get on.
At a power circuit like Thruxton, that isn’t ideal, but we’re looking to make improvements in other areas that will ensure we are at the front of the pack again.
“James hasn’t driven at Thruxton for a while so he will need a few laps to get his eye in again, but I’m confident that we’ll go well this weekend.
If you look at our pace in the first two rounds, we could well have had six Jack Sears Trophy wins to our name already and we’ve only got two, so we’re going to Thruxton aiming to add to that tally and establish ourselves in the championship lead.”
The team will welcome a number of guests over the course of the weekend, including Hendy Motors and Medina Foodservices, as it works towards securing additional backing for the remainder of the 2013 season.