DIXON DOES THE DOUBLE IN CLIO AS BREEZE JUST MISSES OUT ON G50 TITLE Total Control Racing enjoyed a winning conclusion to both the ELF Renault Clio Cup and Michelin Ginetta G50 Cup championships at Brands Hatch Indy Circuit on Sunday, 10th ...
DIXON DOES THE DOUBLE IN CLIO AS BREEZE JUST MISSES OUT ON G50 TITLE
Total Control Racing enjoyed a winning conclusion to both the ELF Renault Clio Cup and Michelin Ginetta G50 Cup championships at Brands Hatch Indy Circuit on Sunday, 10th October, but the Wednesbury team just missed out on title success.
In the Clio Cup category, Kent racer James Dixon added to the maiden victory he achieved in round 19 on Saturday with another outstanding performance in the final race of the year and in doing so managed to secure a finish in the coveted top six in the driver standings.
Starting on pole position for Sunday's race, Dixon didn't make the best of getaways but somehow managed to get back inside fellow front-row starter Josh Cook at Paddock Hill Bend on the opening lap to re-take the lead.
From that point on, Dixon never looked back and although under immense pressure from former double Clio Cup Champion Paul Rivett throughout the 20-lap duration he held firm at the front and took the chequered flag just 0.4 seconds ahead of the vastly experienced saloon car campaigner.
Giving Dixon another win in the Graduate Cup Class too, the 20-year-old also posted the fastest lap of the encounter with a time of 52.593 seconds (82.04mph) -- just a couple of 10ths of a second shy of the track lap record.
Team-mate Mike Robinson ended the season just a single point shy of the top four in the driver standings after a less than straightforward run in round 20. He did manage to finish ahead of his closest rival James Colburn on the track but a difficult first lap dropped the Surrey racer down the order from his starting position of third.
Slipping to 12th place, Robinson managed to carve his way back through ahead of Colburn into eighth as the race wore on but it just wasn't quite enough to make the difference needed. Sam Tordoff, who graduated into the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship at Brands Hatch this weekend, had already secured third in the Clio Cup standings during the previous two rounds.
In another tantalisingly close finish, TCR just missed out on reclaiming the 2010 entrant's title by a mere three points -- instead the Wednesbury team had to settle for the runner-up placing some 170 points clear of the third placed squad.
Car racing newcomer Andy Jordan, who had only ever contested one club-level event prior to jumping in at the deep end in the ultra-competitive Clios this weekend, did a sterling job and made big strides forward throughout the event. Finishing round 20 in 14th position, the rookie driver got his lap times down to within just a second of those managed by race-winning team-mate Dixon.
Commenting on the weekend, team principal Lee Brookes said: "James didn't put a wheel wrong all weekend, it's been a superb end to the season for him and we can't fault his performance at all -- to beat Paul (Rivett) is a task in itself, to win both races is fantastic. James will be tough to beat in 2011.
"Mike's had a good year, he's raced well but he did deserve a lot more from the season. He's had so much bad luck, like in Sunday's race where he got pushed back on the first lap, but he's always been there or thereabouts. Andy did another great job, it was a terrific effort when you consider the sort of competition he's been up against. He should be very pleased with what he accomplished."
Ninth win of season not quite enough to give Breeze Ginetta G50 crown Season-long Michelin Ginetta G50 Cup title contender Carl Breeze just missed out on winning the 2010 championship for TCR at Brands Hatch on Sunday despite taking his ninth win of the campaign in round 27 and backing it up with yet another podium in round 28.
Winning the first of the day's encounters from pole position, having taken victory in round 26 on Saturday too, Breeze did as much as he possibly could and raced brilliantly but third position for Frank Wrathall was enough to give the latter the title.
Knowing the championship had been put beyond his grasp, the Kings Lynn driver headed into the last race of the campaign pushing for his 10th win but had to settle for a still impressive third place in the end. Overall for the year, Breeze ends the campaign 10 points behind Wrathall when the double 'drop score' ruling of the series is applied -- each driver having to deduct their two worst finishes.
Team-mate Joachim Ritter, a mainstay of Ginetta G50 Cup racing, finished ninth in both of Sunday's races to conclude the season an impressive seventh overall in the championship standings. Adding his and Breeze's points together, TCR concludes 2010 third in the team's title race.
Starting round 27 in ninth place on the grid, Ritter battled hard over the top eight with Dan Denis and Julien Draper but as the race reached its conclusion the trio became slightly more spread out. In round 28, Ritter was eighth at the start and became locked in battle with Colin White who actually pushed the TCR man wide at Clearways on lap nine. Ritter recovered though to finish in ninth.
"Carl did as much as he could do, he won the first two races of the weekend but it just wasn't quite enough unfortunately", said Brookes, "Obviously we're disappointed for him but he's had a fantastic season and has won more races than anyone. In the end, it all came down to the bad luck he's had.
"Joachim produced good lap times this weekend and raced strongly to some good results. He's had a good run this year and has definitely improved as a driver, taking seventh in the championship is a great result."
Final 2010 ELF Renault Clio Cup Standings
Drivers: 3rd Sam Tordoff, 382pts; 5th Mike Robinson, 344pts; 6th James Dixon, 285pts
Team: 2nd Total Control Racing, 880pts
Final 2010 Michelin Ginetta G50 Cup Standings
Drivers: 2nd Carl Breeze, 717pts; 7th Joachim Ritter, 321pts
Team: 3rd Total Control Racing, 1114pts