DIFFICULT SNETTERTON WEEKEND FOR ARKAS RACING
Arkas Racing with Sunshine.co.uk came through a difficult weekend at Snetterton Circuit in Norfolk yesterday, Sunday, 13th July, with the consolation of seeing both Erkut Kizilirmak and Martyn Bell finish in the Independents Trophy points during the third HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship race of the day.
With mixed fortunes blighting the sixth event of the 2008 season, the Leamington Spa based team battled through to see Turkish star Kizilirmak take the round 18 chequered flag in 14th place overall with British team-mate Bell recovering to 15th place after an early spin.
Following the conclusion of the race though, eighth placed Adam Jones was thrown out of the results classification after his SEAT Leon failed a weight-check. This meant Kizilirmak moved up to 13th position, and ninth in the Independents Trophy, while Bell was lifted into 14th place and also took the final Independents point for 10th in class.
The first race of the day, round 16, saw Kizilirmak move ahead of Bell into the Esses on the opening tour with the pair running in formation but on lap two an off for the Barrow-upon-Humber 43-year-old saw him ruled out of the remainder of the race with damage.
Following a six-lap Safety Car period, the re-start came on lap nine with Kizilirmak in 17th position but just a couple of laps from home, the 38-year-old Turkish racer lost out to John George and had to settle for 18th place at the flag.
Round 17 saw a reversal in fortunes for the Arkas Racing pairing with Kizilirmak the one to suffer a retirement on his sixth lap. Bell did have his own problems midway through the race as he dramatically slowed but after pitting he rejoined a lap down to take an 18th place finish, just ahead of SEAT's Darren Turner.
The Tech-Speed Motorsport mechanics, which form the backbone of Arkas Racing with Sunshine.co.uk, did a typically sterling job throughout the Snetterton weekend and will now be hoping for a more fruitful outing at Oulton Park Island Circuit in Cheshire just a fortnight from now.
Summing up the team's weekend, Kizilirmak commented: "It's been difficult. We had hoped for a good run at Snetterton but we had some problems with the cars and Martyn and I also made some mistakes ourselves. It's a big shame but the team deserves credit, the guys worked really hard.
"I know I speak for Martyn when I say how much we appreciate the efforts of everyone at Tech-Speed, they do a fantastic job for us. I hoped we would have more success this weekend, hopefully Oulton Park in two weeks will be better for Arkas Racing."
Television highlights of the three Snetterton races will be shown on ITV1 late tonight, Monday, 14th July, at 01.00. Additional screenings will be broadcast on Freeview, digital satellite and cable channel ITV4 and also on Men & Motors - please check listings for further details.
The BTCC will be back in action just two weeks from now on 26th/27th July at Oulton Park Island Circuit in Cheshire for rounds 19, 20 and 21.