OFFICIAL NEWS FROM TOCA Oulton Park, UK, 6/9/95
Series leader John Cleland underlined his intention to clinch the Auto Trader RAC British Touring Car Championship at Oulton Park on Sunday (Sep 10) by setting the fastest time in today's (Wednesday) official TOCA test.
The Scotsman currently leads the title race by a healthy 52 points, but with 24 points awarded to the winner of each of the four remaining rounds, the crown is far from safe.
Arch rival Rickard Rydell, who must bag five points more than Cleland from Sunday's two encounters on Oulton Park's shorter Fosters Circuit to keep his title hopes alive, responded superbly to the challenge, setting the second fastest lap time. It was, however, a mixed day for the Swede - he badly damaged his race car and was forced to switch to his spare Volvo.
Indeed the day was littered with incidents, the worst befalling Patrick Watts, who survived a dramatic accident in his Peugeot. The powerful Williams-Renault team was also in the wars - Alain Menu lost vital track time following a mysterious rear suspension failure on his Laguna.
With main protagonists Cleland and Rydell right to the fore, plus Honda, Toyota, BMW and Alfa Romeo showing some encouraging late-season form, a huge crowd should be treated to two more epic touring car races on Sunday... perhaps also the crowning of the 1995 BTCC champion.
OFFICIAL TIMES Auto Trader RAC British Touring Car Championship, TOCA test Oulton Park, Cheshire 06/09/95
1 John Cleland (GB) Vauxhall Cavalier, 1 min 00.611 seconds, 98.23mph 2 Rickard Rydell (Swe), Volvo 850, 1:00.703s 3 James Kaye (GB) Honda Accord, 1:00.758s 4 Julian Bailey (GB) Toyota Carina E, 1:00.881s 5 David Leslie (GB) Honda Accord, 1:00.916s 6 Will Hoy (GB) Renault Laguna, 1:01.072s 7 David Brabham (AUS) BMW 318i, 1:01.160s 8 Alain Menu (CH) Renault Laguna, 1:01.256s 9 Gabriele Tarquini (I) Alfa Romeo 155, 1:00.277s 10 Paul Radisich (NZ) Ford Mondeo, 1:00.279s 11 Tim Harvey (GB), Volvo 850, 1:00.288s 12 Johnny Cecotto (Ven), BMW 318i, 1:00.382s
BTCC rounds 22 and 23: Oulton Park, Sunday 10/09/95
Max Communications Best in British Motor Sport website: http://www.demon.co.uk/racing/index.html