David Bartrum's Blog
10th October 2012
There was a fast turn round after Rockingham to go to British GT at Donington a week later. Rockingham was a reasonable weekend. It was wet and it threw up some different things and we could have done with it being dry for the NGTC car.
After Donington with the GT cars it was straight into Silverstone with the touring cars. I was looking forward to Silverstone thinking we would have a good car and the data from Rockingham threw up some things that would be useful at Silverstone, unlike a track like Knockhill.
We were going back to three cars with Liam rejoining the team, and it was nice to welcome him back. We went to Silverstone with an open mind, thinking we'd be quite good with both cars. Silverstone is a power circuit, more so than handling, and the Super 2000 car went very well round there last time. Aron is getting faster and faster and his confidence is up and his understanding of the car and the championship is up.
We did very well straightaway in qualifying. We had a bit of an issue in FP1 when Mat slid off. He was trying really hard and caught a bit of mud and did a bit of damage, but not too much. Mat qualified second, which was brilliant, and Aron was seventh, which was also brilliant, and Liam was 16th. The interesting thing was that there were only three-tenths between Aron in seventh and Liam in 16th. It was very tight and that set us up well for the race.
In the first race we had mixed fortunes. Mat blasted off and got himself into the lead and we looked set for a stonking result. We had Mat leading the race and Aron sat in fourth and we were hoping and praying he'd get Newsham to get a podium. Then four laps from the end, we had bad luck and good luck in the same moment. Mat's throttle body packed up and he cruised to a halt. But then we looked at Aron and he was up to third and finally going to get that first podium. We wanted him to get that so badly and he really deserved it, particularly on his performance over the second half of the season. Every cloud has a silver lining. Unfortunately, Liam didn't finish: he had contact with Lea Wood.
There was a bit of sadness that we didn't get the first win, but everyone was very upbeat about the way the car had gone. What can I say about race two? What a great race.
Mat got off the line very well from P17 and got into a battle as he stormed up the order. Aron was having a good race and going well, then all of a sudden the drama hit. Plato had a problem and then Mat got past Rob Collard to make history for Motorbase. It was stonking drive from Mat to start so far back and come through to win. Aron was right up there in fourth and Liam was 13th.
The grid draw for race three was pulled out by our guest Derek Redmond, the 400-metre runner, and he pulled number 10 out. So that sent Mat back to P10 on the grid and gave us the worst scenario going! Derek was a great guest to have along, but that gave Mat another monumental task. Mat went charging through and it was a great race. Liam unfortunately had an engine problem and pulled off, but Aron was firmly in the battle and ended up ninth. It was another stunning drive from Mat to go from tenth on the grid to finish second after a lot of battling.
It was another great result for us. The win was a dream come true and Aron got his first podium and it gave us two Independent wins in a great weekend for Motorbase. We had the largest amount of guests we've ever had and I really enjoyed the atmosphere. It was electric in the garage and I wish all race weekends could be like the last two I've had. Roll on Brands Hatch.
Before Brands we're doing a bit more development work on the NGTC car and working on the packaging around the engine bay to make things even more effective. We're looking forward to the challenge of our home circuit. It would be nice to finish on a high at home.