Race Report - Round 9 Silverstone
Tuesday, 20 September 2016 15:25
Frustrating Silverstone for Eurotech
Eurotech Racing took to their home circuit as the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship rolled in to Silverstone for the penultimate round of the 2016 season.
The two Honda Civic Type R’s driven by Jeff Smith and Martin Depper showed strong pace early in qualifying but were hampered by a red flag five minutes from the end just as they were about to go on their hot laps, having to pit and losing tyre temperature meant they didn’t fulfil the full potential they had shown in free practice. Despite this both cars qualified inside the top 20 on the incredibly close grid with just a second separating the top 25 cars, with Depper in P14 and Smith in P18.
Race 1 saw the whole grid stay within close proximity on the short circuit, both Eurotech cars showing good form, progressing nicely through the pack, four laps from the end both were sitting comfortably in strong positions Depper in 11th and Smith in 14th looking like a good finish was on the cards when the run of bad luck struck again with Depper being sandwiched between Rob Collard and Aiden Moffat resulting in an upright failure, the wheel and drive shaft breaking free and sending him sideways at speed on to the grass at Becketts. This was followed swiftly by Smith getting a puncture, trying to avoid pitting and losing a lap he nursed it home managing to salvage a 15th place finish and some valuable points.
For race 2 the track temperature was rising as the sun beat down, determined to make up for the race 1 disasters Depper having to start from 27th on the grid made impressive progress gaining nine places to finish 18th. Smith was also putting in impressive drive and was up in to 11th place when unbelievably he suffered another puncture which exploded taking with it most of the Type R’s front left quarter, resulting in a safety car being deployed to recover the tyre and bodywork debris from all over the track. This allowed Smith to re-join after a lightening quick tyre change from the Eurotech team eventually finishing in 25th.
Smith battled his way through in race 3 from 25th to finish in 15th just in to the points and this time Depper in 18th suffered a puncture, unbelievably making it three punctures in one day for Eurotech.
Team principal Jeff Smith said “to get a puncture is unlucky, to get three in one day is unbelievable. We’ve been on a real run of bad luck but we have a great team of guys and great cars under us, we keep showing that the pace is there, so we just have to keep our heads up and push on”
The BTCC heads to Brands Hatch Grand Prix circuit for the grand finale on October 1st and 2nd Eurotech are holding 5th place in the Independent Teams Championship and will head to Brands Hatch looking to end the season on a high.
- Brands Hatch GP October 1st/2nd Tuesday, 20 September 2016 15:30