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Motorbase Performance extends Independent Championship lead at Oulton Park

June 5th 2016

Motorbase Performance extends Independent Championship lead at Oulton Park

Motorbase Performance extended its Independent Championship lead at Oulton Park circuit this weekend securing 4 top ten finishes during rounds 10, 11 & 12 of the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship (June 4/5).

Close times and on-board weight hampered Jordan and Jackson's qualifying performance on Saturday afternoon with the Ford Focus STs struggling with outright pace on the Cheshire track. Despite missing out on pole by just 4 tenths, the #77 Focus secured the best placed finish for the Motorbase squad with Jordan starting in P12. With 22 cars all within a second of the fastest lap time, Jackson toiled with the additional 48kg championship success ballast on-board the #7 Focus and had to settle in 25th.

A strong start for the Motorbase duo in Sunday's opening race saw Jordan take Abbott for 11th position as the field headed into Old Hall corner. Further back team-mate Jackson delivered another of his trademark comeback drives and had made up an impressive 4 places by the end of the opening lap. The #7 Focus ST's charge continued with Jackson sitting in 17th place by lap 6. With the majority of the grid running on the Dunlop soft compound tyre and little opportunity for overtaking on the notoriously tricky International circuit the race soon settled into a processional formation and Jordan and Jackson eventually crossed the line in P10 and P16.

Motorbase Performance extends Independent Championship lead at Oulton ParkClear of ballast, Jackson's race 2 proved more fruitful with the duo-backed man breaking into the top ten after a battling drive from 16th place; picking up 15 all-important points for his Independent Championship challenge. Likewise a hard fought race for team-mate Jordan was rewarded with an 8thplace finish for the #77 Focus; moving the Red Bull athlete into the lead of the Independent drivers' standings.

Just missing out on the reversed grid draw for Sunday's closing race, Jordan and Jackson's grid positions remained but the success ballast increased with the #77 and #7 Focus STs loaded with 21kg and 9kg respectively. Both drivers started well off the line and the Motorbase pair battled their way through a challenging race with both cars sustaining damage in the 15 lap race. Despite a promising start, contact on #7 Focus resulted in Jackson dropping down the order to end the race in a disappointing P13.

Motorbase Performance extends Independent Championship lead at Oulton ParkHoping for a more profitable result to mark his 250th BTCC race, Jordan endured his own battles also sustaining damage from the erratic front-running pack as they jostled for the final podium spot. However, the 27-year-old showed his championship-winning race-craft as the race entered its closing stages claiming 8th in the weekend's final race to secure his third points finish of the weekend.

Although a difficult weekend for the Motorbase squad off the back of such a hugely successful meeting at Thruxton, the Wrotham-based outfit has extended its lead at the top of the Independent Teams Championship to 49 points, with Andrew Jordan now topping the Independent Drivers' standings and Mat Jackson just 18 points behind in 3rd.

The Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship now has a short break in the calendar before reconvening at Croft in North Yorkshire for rounds 13, 14 and 15 on 18/19 June.

Motorbase Performance Team Manager Oly Collins: 
"After a tough weekend we've come away with our 100% reliability record intact, some important points finishes, extended our Independents Championship lead and had some good race pace. However, our poor qualifying results yesterday have proven too much to overcome for results today.

Motorbase Performance extends Independent Championship lead at Oulton Park"Oulton Park is a notoriously difficult place to overtake at and it was no different today. We feel that we're being out performed in a straight-line as we were at Thruxton but unfortunately there is little we can do about that within the regulations. We have some work to do before Croft."

#77 Driver Andrew Jordan: 
"This weekend has been very frustrating, especially coming off what we had at Thruxton. It's hard enough to progress on this track but with so much difference between us and the Swindon engines I just feel like we've had to fight with one arm behind our back all weekend. Oulton is a stop start circuit so it's just amplified the difference, but racing against them they're pulling 3 or 4 lengths away from us coming out of Lodge and the hairpin.

"I'm happy with our performance all weekend so it's really frustrating to not get the results to show that. All things considered I think we've done a good job with what we've had but it's not a fair reflection on the team. I just hope it gets looked at before we get to Croft.

"Taking the positives from the weekend; having won the overall championship, the aim is always the aim to win again but to be leading the Independents championship here after such a tough day just shows the  consistency in our results so far."

#7 Driver Mat Jackson: 
"We've proven that the EcoBoost engine is capable of getting the results that we expect from Mountune with a different boost setting but clearly we are struggling against our competitors who appear to have more straight line speed than us.

"Maybe we need to revisit our aerodynamics to see what gains can be made there but truthfully I think that TOCA need to look into it. It's obvious that we're struggling to keep up in a straight line, we're fine in the corners but of course it just means that we can't race on a level playing field at the moment."