Aiden Moffat just missed out on points.
Aiden Moffat just missed out on points after a hero’s drive at Oulton Park on Sunday, when a tyre deflated on the final lap of the 12-lap thriller
I have to say that at Oulton Park we endured a tough weekend; first struggling to find clear track space in the all-important qualifying session — this condemned us to start 16th on the grid — at a circuit in which overtaking is notoriously difficult.
In the first race I was right in the middle of the pack, hunting for a gap but with the narrow track, I was mindful of the need to look after the car for the races two and three. So kept it steady and brought the car home unscathed in 16th place.
The car was feeling good and I was confident at the beginning of the second 15-lap race, and eager to gain ground around the first few corners. However on the exit of turn one, I was hit from behind by the Vauxhall Astra of Josh Cook which damaged the rear suspension of the Laser Tools Racing Mercedes. Worse was to come: as we headed into the downhill left-hander at Cascades, coping with the damaged rear suspension, I was harpooned by an out-of-control Dan Cammish (Honda Civic) who was on the grass at high speed! Further contact forced me into retirement with damage, meaning that there was lots of hard work on the car for the team to sort out, and that I would start the third race from 31st on the grid.
Race 3: a massive start-line accident forced a restart but with the race duration reduced to 12 laps, meaning that there was less time to gain places. I was all fired up though, and stormed through the opening corners and picked up five places by turn three! More was to come and I worked my way up to 15th from 31st on the grid, but on the last lap, there was more drama. I turned into the first corner and the car felt funny. Then it developed a vibration, and I knew I had a problem. I backed off and tried to nurse the car to the flag, but the front left tyre was shredded and I was down to the rim at the last corner.
That meant I fell to 20th, which is a real frustration, but it was a really good race. The car felt great because we had changed a few things to get a better set-up for the last race and it certainly worked. I am disappointed to miss out on points but really happy with how the car went.
As I crossed the finish line, the remains of the tyre came off the rim and I had to park the car at the first corner. Once out of the car, I was surrounded by well-wishers and spent the next half an hour with some great BTCC enthusiasts.
The next stop for the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship is at Croft, North Yorkshire, on June 23/24 — the car was great in that last race so we take that set up and speed to Croft and will be back in the game. Bring it on!
13 Jun 2018