BTCC: Oulton Park: Team PSP race report

Leslie gains first podium for Team PSP in BTCC at Oulton Park; third place after second-place finisher penalised David Leslie drove his Team Petronas Syntium Proton Impian to a fine fourth place on the road in Race 4 of the 2002 British Touring...

Leslie gains first podium for Team PSP in BTCC at Oulton Park; third place after second-place finisher penalised

David Leslie drove his Team Petronas Syntium Proton Impian to a fine fourth place on the road in Race 4 of the 2002 British Touring Car Championship on the Island circuit at Oulton Park today, and was promoted to third after second-place man Tim Harvey was penalised for an illegal pitstop. Leslie also secured a solid 8th place in the short Sprint race (Race 3). Teammate Phil Bennett was sidelined in the Sprint race just three laps from the finish.

David Wong, Team Principal, Team PSP said:"I'm delighted for David and for the team-- we're making good progress at only our second race weekend and have added to our Manufacturer's points tally."

Race 3-- Sprint:

Leslie started Race 3 fast and made up two places from his 10th place on the grid before the safety car came out after one lap. Phil Bennett also started well, making up three places. Sadly, Bennett's charge was to come to naught with his retirement on lap 16.

After running as high as 6th place, Leslie was caught up in a final lap duel with Priaulx's Honda which finally pipped the Scot on the line by just .03 seconds to take seventh spot from him.

David Leslie said:"Priaulx's straight-line speed was just amazing this weekend-- I couldn't keep him at bay any longer. The good news is that the gap between us and the pace-setters is closing inexorably."

Race 4-- Feature:

With Team PSP's orders once again to go for a finish, Leslie started the 25-lap Feature race conservatively, holding his grid place. However, with hotter heads ahead tangling on Oulton Park's demanding corners, Leslie found himself running as high as third place and holding a top-six place for the majority of the race. He was elevated to fourth after Vauxhall's tyre and mechanical maladies returned to slow them and started a charge with less than five seconds separating him from the battle between Harvey (Peugeot 406) and Hughes (MG ZS) for third and fourth place.

David Leslie finished the Feature Race just 9.5 seconds behind race-winner and local hero Paul O'Neill, with a best lap time of 1:29.065, just 0.721 seconds shy of O'Neill's best. Leslie said:"The car felt terrific throughout the race and I was thrilled to secure fourth place. I found I could lap at virtually the same pace as the leaders at the end and I could scent a podium place. Little did I know I'd get it after I'd left the circuit! I'm convinced that Team PSP has a winner here-- the jigsaw pieces are gradually coming together, so long as we keep up the pressure."

-psp-

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About this article
Series BTCC
Drivers Paul O'Neill , Tim Harvey , David Leslie , Phil Bennett