The AmDTuning.com team endured its most trying weekend of the season to date as the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship headed for Thruxton for the third race of the year.
Isle of Wight racer James Kaye headed into the weekend having taken a win at both Brands Hatch and Donington Park, with the team aiming to add to that tally at a circuit where it’s turbo-powered Volkswagen Golf had always run well in the past.
Despite being handed a relative boost reduction compared to his S2000 rivals, James was able to qualify third in class for the opening race, with the Golf lining up 23rd on the grid for the opening race.
Running in the lead pack when the race got underway, James battled his way to the front of the S2000 field only to be forced into retirement moments after securing the lead when a CV joint broke – leaving him no option but to pull off circuit at the Complex.
A strong result again escaped James in the second race when a puncture saw him retire while running in second spot, while his weekend ended with a third place finish in race three; the Golf taking the flag in 19th overall.
“We’ve had a problem this weekend that we’ve not been able to solve and just haven’t been able to replicate the kind of pace we showed in the opening two rounds,” James said. “From practice through to the three races, we struggled for grip and we were chasing our tails a bit trying to find the best solution.
“We made some big changes but didn’t make the progress we hoped for, so we need to have a look and see what the cause of our problems were. This is just one of those weekends that we need to put behind us and make sure we come out fighting at Oulton Park.”
Team boss Shaun Hollamby agreed that it had been a challenging weekend for the team but vowed to come out fighting when the season resumes at Oulton Park next month.
“It’s been a disappointing weekend for us,” he said. “The fact that the other S2000 cars were given a boost increase didn’t help us, but that wasn’t the single cause of our problems this weekend. Traditionally, the Golf has gone well at Thruxton in the past but for whatever reason, we just haven’t been on the pace this weekend.
“We made various changes to the car but just didn’t have the speed that we expected, and we have to investigate the reasons why. We need to get back to base, regroup and make sure that we come back stronger at Oulton Park.”