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Motorbase Performance focused on title bid as BTCC heads to Rockingham

August 30th 2016

Motorbase Performance focused on title bid as BTCC heads to Rockingham

Motorbase Performance celebrated a superb double podium and two Independent race wins during an action-packed weekend of Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship action at Rockingham over the bank holiday weekend (August 27/28).

Mat Jackson and Andrew Jordan shared the spoils of the Kent-based squad's success with the Motorbase duo taking an outright podium and Independent win apiece during Sunday's opening two contests –recording an Independent 1-2 in both.

A strong start to the weekend during Saturday morning's free practice sessions translated into an excellent front row start for Jackson with the 35-year-old initially claiming pole before the session was red-flagged. Jackson eventually slotted into P2, narrowly missing out on the top spot by just 0.288 seconds. Despite topping the times in free practice 1, Jordan was unable to tie together the perfect lap and the Pirtek-backed racer was left disappointed in P14.

Motorbase Performance focused on title bid as BTCC heads to RockinghamAn accustomed fast start off the line from Jackson in race 1 saw the #7 Focus head into turn 1 side by side with race leader Shedden with Jordan also making up an impressive 3 places as the grid headed into the in-field. With a safety car deployment allowing the fast charging Subaru's to catch the DUO-backed Focus, Jackson delivered yet another class act in defensive manoeuvres - holding off both works-backed cars  for the remaining 15 laps to take P2 at the chequered flag - marking his 75th BTCC podium. A strong fight back from Jordan saw the Red Bull athlete take on the manufacturer Hondas, Subaru's and MGs to take 7th overall and the first 1-2 Independent finish of the day for Motorbase.

Race 2 started in similar fashion with the Motorbase pair charging into the race lead for a brief Motorbase 1-2 on the grid's second tour of the oval circuit. With 66kg of ballast hampering Jackson's pace, he was unable to hold off Tordoff and Collard's lighter BMWs as the race progressed and he did well to bring the #7 Focus home in P4.  Jordan's time to shine came in the final 4 laps when the Red Bull athlete moved past Jackson, fending off a final lap challenge from Collard to take 2nd on his 50thvisit to the BTCC rostrum.

Motorbase Performance focused on title bid as BTCC heads to RockinghamThe reversed grid draw slotted Jackson and Jordan into 4th and 6th for the final race of the weekend. With both Focus STs running on the less-favoured hard compound tyre coupled with 48kg and 66kg of ballast, the pair had a tough fight to hold position. Jackson fared better and a gallant performance from the DUO-man was rewarded with a P5 finish, whilst Jordan struggled to keep the #77 Focus on-line and dropped down the order as the laps unfolded – eventually crossing the line in 12th.

After another fantastic weekend performance, Motorbase Performance leaves Rockingham with an unassailable 136 point lead at the top of the Independent Teams' Championship and the Wrotham-based outfit is on track to secure a historic maiden BTCC Title as the season heads into the penultimate meeting at Silverstone on September 17/18.

Team Manager Oly Collins: 
"What a great weekend! Mat, Andrew and the whole team were superb throughout. It's been a very rewarding weekend strengthening Motorbase as a serious contender against the Manufacturer teams, and to have as good as secured our first ever BTCC title in the Independent Teams' Championship with two weekends still to go is a fantastic testament to the talent and hard work of the team. 

"We've been on the pace in every session, in wet and dry conditions and we're now really looking forward to an exciting climax to the season at last two race meetings."

Motorbase Performance focused on title bid as BTCC heads to Rockingham#7 Driver Mat Jackson: 
"Qualifying went to plan; we managed to pull together a fast lap in really tricky conditions to get us on the front row for race 1 which is always a big bonus here as it spreads out pretty quickly. Race 1 was yet another defensive drive with the Subaru's for company for the whole race but we managed to keep them at bay, playing to our strengths through the corners and defending in the high speed straights.

"We struggled a bit more on overall pace with the extra weight on-board in race 2. We managed to get a great start to take the lead but ultimately the weight took its toll and moved us back down to 4thwhich although disappointing, it did mean that we were lighter for the last race. Race 3 was tough with the hard tyre, but we got a good break early on and if it wasn't for the safety car then I think we would have been on for another podium.

"To come away with a podium and two top five results is great for our Championship position heading into the second to last round at Silverstone."

#77 Driver Andrew Jordan:
Motorbase Performance focused on title bid as BTCC heads to Rockingham"We made it hard for ourselves in qualifying on Saturday but to come back from that in race 1 with good pace in the car and enjoyed some good racing with some great overtakes. To follow that up with a podium in race 2 and an Independent win was really nice. I just wish we hadn't have made it so hard for ourselves in qualifying but that's how it goes sometimes. Thankfully we've made up for it in the races today.

"Race 3 was really tough with a fair bit of weight on and running the hard tyre. We got biffed around a bit and knocked out of line which dropped us back.  I think if we'd been in clean air we could've managed the tyre a bit better but because we had to defend so hard I just couldn't get back in unfortunately.

"On the whole though I think we managed to rescue a terrible Saturday, coming away with two good results. It was really nice to get back on the podium – it's been too long and things finally opened up nicely for us in race 1 and 2 and we managed to put our pace to good use."