www.theAA.com British Touring Car Championship Rounds 19 and 20 Oulton Park, Cheshire 25/26th August 2001 PREVIEW 'Peugeot Head Back To Oulton Park For Rounds 19 and 20 As Steve Soper Celebrates 100th BTCC Race' The Peugeot 406 CoupÃ¨ Race...
www.theAA.com British Touring Car Championship
Rounds 19 and 20
Oulton Park, Cheshire
25/26th August 2001
'Peugeot Head Back To Oulton Park For Rounds 19 and 20 As Steve Soper Celebrates 100th BTCC Race'
The Peugeot 406 Coupè Race Team head north again this weekend for the second trip to Oulton Park, Cheshire this season for rounds 19 and 20 of the www.theAA.com British Touring Car Championship. (25/26th August)
Having previously visited the 2.36m circuit back in May, teams should be on top form, with full data analysis of both track and car that will hopefully produce some of the most competitive racing we have seen so far this year.
This weekend's Feature race will be no ordinary race for Peugeot's Steve Soper, as 'the legend', who first stepped in a Touring Car in 1982, celebrates his 100th British Touring Car Race in true Worzel Gummage style with a 'Cup of tea and a slice of cake.'
Media are invited to join Soper and the team as he slices his 406 Coupè cake in half for all to share at the Peugeot awning (just behind the Peugeot garages 1a/b). Time to be confirmed on race day but will take part between the Sprint and Feature race.
"Oulton Park is a physically and technically demanding track, that makes for difficult overtaking. It's an interesting circuit to be celebrating at!" commented Soper.
The team have spent their time since Croft preparing one of Dan Eaves' two recently damaged cars, yet despite all their hard work, neither of the cars will be ready. As such, Eaves will be appearing in Aaron Slights allocated car. Steve Soper's 406 Coupè though has been restored to its former glory, this being after his controversial clash with Phil Bennett. A clash that earned the egg:sport driver a one race ban.
The team have also been working on specific changes after their data gathering exercise at Croft. Vic Lee, Team Manager explains:
'We knew the cars would be no more competitive at Croft than they were at Snetterton, so we used that weekend as a chance to gather some much need technical information. We tried different set ups that we would normally not have time to experiment with. We have a new geometry and damper design for Oulton Park, so we're are hoping for a marked improvement.' Eaves, after all his bumps and bashes at both Knockhill and Snetterton, suffered from constant under-steer at Croft and is now desperate for a chance to really show Peugeot fans what the 406 Coupè is capable of. Despite past troubles he will be holding nothing back in his pursuit for a winning position this weekend.
Dan Eaves said, 'The Cheshire circuit has long been a favourite of mine and I intend to put this to my advantage! We have made a vast amount of improvements, and I will be looking for a podium position this weekend.'
Mick Linford, Motorsport Manager for Peugeot Motor Company Plc said, 'Although we haven't achieved our goal so far this season, we believe we have found a solution to our problems, this being related to both the engine and suspension areas. We certainly haven't thrown the towel in for this year and I am confident that this weekend could well be the turning point for us.'
Oulton Park Schedule:
Saturday Qualifying: 15.15 -15.45
Sunday Races: BTCC Sprint race 12.55 (15 laps) with the Feature race at 16.05 (30 laps)
Pit walk-about and autograph signing (only Sunday) which allows the general public into the pits to meet their favoured drivers for 45 minutes begins at 11.00am.
TOCA radio 1602MW will be live throughout the weekend at Oulton Park and to surrounding villages. You can also catch up with the action from Oulton Park on BBC Grandstand the weekend following. (Check local press for details).