10/04/2018

Past Renault UK Clio Cup racers star in BTCC’s opening rounds of 2018

It was former Renault UK Clio Cup drivers to the fore once more on the first weekend of the new British Touring Car Championship season with Jack Goff, Ashley Sutton, Mike Bushell and Senna Proctor all starring across the three races at Brands Hatch.
  • 1958021.0003.jpg
  • 2175908.0003.jpg
  • 1814970.0003.jpg

Goff, 2012’s UK Clio Cup Champion (pictured above), took victory in the opening BTCC round at the Kent circuit ahead of Colin Turkington – another past Clio Cup racer.

In round two it was Proctor, a front-runner in 2016’s UK Clio Cup, who made the headlines by coming through from 27th on the grid to achieve an astonishing first victory in the BTCC thanks to a smart gamble to use slick tyres on a drying track.

Proctor’s victory was also the first in the BTCC for the Power Maxed Racing squad – both he and PMR have an association with new Clio Cup team Matrix Motorsport.

Sutton arrived at Brands Hatch as the reigning BTCC Champion and his tin top race craft – honed during his title-winning Clio Cup campaign of 2015 – enabled him to convert a disappointing qualifying performance into three strong points finishes to put him fifth in the drivers’ standings leaving Brands Hatch.

Notably Sutton is a protégé of the BMR Academy which has again chosen the Clio Cup to place its latest rising young star, Bradley Burns…

In fact it’s five former Clio Cup drivers in the BTCC’s top ten after the weekend’s action with Goff in second, Sutton in fifth, Turkington sixth, Proctor seventh and Bushell in tenth.

On his return to the BTCC, Bushell went from 32nd to eighth in race two (after a late decision to switch to slick tyres) and in race three finished fifth after running as high as third.

The Clio Cup meanwhile produced two electrifying races of its own which again served to remind the huge BTCC crowd that flocked to Brands Hatch and also those watching the action up and down the land live on ITV4 why it remains the number one category for up and coming touring car drivers.

And why British Touring Car boss Alan Gow has called the Clio Cup “the perfect sidekick to the BTCC…”

Paul Rivett and Max Coates took the wins at Brands Hatch. Now the title race – along with the BTCC – heads to Donington Park for its next rounds on Sat 28/Sun 29 April.