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Sunday, October 17, 2021

BTCC groups fined for Croft tyre mix-up

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Six automobiles run by 5 groups had the soft-compound Goodyear bolted on for the unsuitable race, with every squad subsequently fined £1000 by sequence organiser TOCA.

Croft was the final of 4 occasions in 2021 that includes the choice tyre, and the laws state that every automotive should use the choice rubber at the least as soon as in every of race one, two and three of a weekend throughout these 4 rounds.

Some drivers, together with championship chief Ash Sutton and new runner-up Jake Hill, had already used the choice in every of race one, two and three throughout the previous three option-tyre occasions, so had a free selection for Croft.

However over half the sector was locked in to utilizing the choice in a particular race at Croft, together with first-race winner Aiden Moffat and title contenders Tom Ingram, Josh {Cook} and Colin Turkington.

Whereas these drivers used the choice tyre within the appropriate race, six didn’t: Dan Rowbottom (Group Dynamics Honda); Jason Plato (Energy Maxed Racing Vauxhall); Chris Smiley and Jack Butel (Excelr8 Motorsport Hyundais); Sam Smelt (Speedworks Motorsport Toyota); and Aron Taylor-Smith (Group Onerous Cupra).

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Three of them – Plato, Smiley and Taylor-Smith – scored factors whereas operating on the unsuitable tyres, though the very best consequence, a seventh for Smiley in race one, got here on the common medium Goodyear when he ought to have been operating the helpful tender rubber.

Begin motion, Aiden Moffat, Laser Instruments Racing Infiniti Q50 leads

Photograph by: JEP / Motorsport Images

BTCC supremo Alan Gow advised Autosport that the comparatively lenient punishment of a effective was as a result of not one of the six scored a major quantity of factors.

“It will have been churlish to place them to the again of the grid [for the first race at this weekend’s Silverstone round] – that wouldn’t have achieved something, as a result of half of them are behind the grid anyway,” stated Gow.

“And it wasn’t an exclusion offence – it was an administrative screw-up.”

Gow added that had the offence been dedicated by one of many main title contenders and had they scored excessive factors, it could have been a unique final result.

“If on account of placing the unsuitable tyres on for that race you probably did very nicely, it could be a completely completely different consequence,” he stated.

“You’d exclude them or take them out of the factors.”

The error seems to have resulted from confusion amongst groups, because the option-tyre format was dropped as a 2020 COVID-19 measure and solely partially reintroduced this season.

“It’s plain and easy from our facet of issues,” admitted Speedworks boss Christian Dick of the error on Smelt’s automotive.

“The regulation will not be super-clearly written. The engineer on Sam’s automotive misunderstood that regulation and thought he may run that tyre in that race. Clearly he was unsuitable.

“The lesson realized is, should you’ve obtained any queries, ask earlier than you soar in. We maintain our fingers up, pay the effective and transfer on.”

Gordon Shedden, Team Dynamics Honda Civic Type R

Gordon Shedden, Group Dynamics Honda Civic Kind R

Photograph by: JEP / Motorsport Images

Shedden censured for Edwards Shunt 

Three-time BTCC champion Gordon Shedden was reprimanded and given two penalty factors on his licence for his heavy crash with Jade Edwards within the previous spherical at Thruxton.

The inquest was held final weekend at Croft, after Group Dynamics Honda driver Shedden and BTC Racing Honda racer Edwards had each blamed the other.

Shedden’s team-mate Dan Rowbottom was additionally penalised for an offence in the identical race. He gained positions earlier than the start-finish line at a jumbled safety-car restart, and a one-second time addition drops him out of the factors from 14th to sixteenth.

Additional punishments have been dished out for Croft misdemeanours.

Smiley was reprimanded and issued with two licence penalty factors for a first-race collision with Rowbottom on the hairpin that resulted in race-ending injury for Ollie Jackson, and Taylor-Smith was given a verbal warning for an incident that knocked Rowbottom into the obstacles on the next lap.

Learn Additionally:

Smiley was given a 0.7s penalty after race two for a conflict with Stephen Jelley, relegating him from ninth to eleventh, behind the West Surrey Racing BMW driver.

And Rowbottom was reprimanded and given two licence penalty factors for an incident with Jelley within the finale.

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