SCOTLAND'S KNOCKHILL TRACK NEXT STOP FOR UK'S PREMIER MOTOR RACING SERIES The countdown has begun: there are now less than two weeks to go before the UK's premier motor racing series - the HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship - makes its...
SCOTLAND'S KNOCKHILL TRACK NEXT STOP FOR UK'S PREMIER MOTOR RACING SERIES
The countdown has begun: there are now less than two weeks to go before the UK's premier motor racing series - the HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship - makes its only visit of the year to Scotland for its latest three races at the Knockhill circuit in Fife (Sunday 16 August).
Tens of thousands are expected at the picturesque track, just outside Dunfermline, as the event marks the only opportunity of 2009 for die-hard and casual fans of motor sport and motoring north of the border to see the UK's - indeed some of the world's - very best touring car drivers in action.
Easy access from the M90 motor way, free admission for children (under 8) and a chance to meet the stars of the show - thanks to an open paddock policy - all adds to the appeal. Live nationwide TV coverage of the event on ITV4 will only serve to heighten the sense of occasion.
Furthermore, the locals will surely be out in force to cheer on the BTCC's two Scottish drivers Gordon Shedden (Dalgety Bay) and Jonathan Adam (Kinghorn - pictured). Both are among the very top names on the grid and hoping one day to emulate fellow countrymen such as John Cleland and the late Jim Clark as champions of the series.
But each faces a tough task to achieve a podium finish - let alone a race win - in front of his home crowd. This year's BTCC is at its most competitive in over a decade with more than half the 22-strong grid genuinely capable of achieving victories.
Northern Irishman Colin Turkington, who considers Knockhill something of a home circuit - he is a former student of the nearby Stirling University - currently leads the BTCC Drivers' standings in his Team RAC BMW. But chasing him hard are three former champions, namely VXR team-mates Fabrizio Giovanardi and Matt Neal in their Vauxhall Vectras and Racing Silverline's Jason Plato in his Chevrolet Lacetti. Italian Giovanardi, this year aiming for a third Drivers' title, yesterday won twice at the Snetterton circuit in Norfolk to within 17 points of Turkington who won the third race.
Meanwhile, other front-running teams entering different makes and models of cars such as Fords, Hondas and SEATs all add extra variety, colour and excitement to the spectacle.
Free for Children
Three BTCC races headline the bill at the Knockhill race track on Sunday 16 August. But the crowds will also have another ten races to enjoy from the supporting Ginetta Junior, Ginetta G50, Porsche Carrera Cup and guesting Scottish Legends and Formula Ford categories.
Trackside tickets, available from www.knockhill.com or calling 01383 723337, cost GBP 25.00 per adult and GBP 7.00 for children aged 8-11. Admission for children aged 7 and under is FREE. All prices include complimentary access to the BTCC paddock where the public can rub shoulders with the drivers and seek out autographs, photos and team give-aways.