Team Pyro’s Aron Smith took a composed second win in the AirAsia Renault Clio Cup UK, despite race-long attention from double champion, Paul Rivett at Thruxton today.
Smith held off the Lumison BlueSquare Data/SVE driver who was able to pressurise him for all but a lap when had to defend his second place from Smith’s team-mate, Jack Goff.
“I’m delighted to get the double,” said Smith, who scored his first win this season at Thruxton yesterday.
“I was already in love this place, now I love it even more. It was so much easier racing from pole so I think I’ll qualify on pole more often. Today’s race was even more enjoyable than yesterday’s as Paul was pushing me all the way – it was that much fun I could have raced with him all day long.”
Rivett’s second place and fastest lap maintains his position at the top of the drivers’ points standings with 161 points from Total Control Racing’s James Dixon’s 140 heading to the next round at Cheshire’s Oulton Park.
“Aron was faultless and I couldn’t find a way past,” said Rivett. “I did have a look for a way around the outside, but ended up losing position to Jack. I could see that Adam was right with him, and there was no way I was going to lose two places so I kept alongside Jack and went around the outside through Church – the fastest race corner in the UK. It doesn’t get much better than that.”
Third finishing Goff was a very happy man at the chequered flag. “That was a close race,” he enthused. “Paul was alongside me for what felt like three quarters of a lap. I thought that second place was mine and I couldn’t believe he was still beside me.
Fourth went to Adam Bonham after a race-long battle with Lee Pattison whose JHR Developments team had been working on his car until 03:30 this morning following the damage sustained in Saturday’s race.
“We didn’t know if the car would run straight after yesterday so fifth place isn’t so bad everything considered,” said Pattison.
“I was feeling pretty comfortable in fourth after a battle with Adam, but then the radiator went pop and I lost grip from the coolant leaking at the front.”
Second in the points standings, Dixon took sixth in today’s race. “I just wasn’t quick enough,” he said. “We struggled with the rear end all weekend and I didn’t drive here in the Clio last year. The damage was done in qualifying really so at least I brought the car home in both races. I need to be back on the podium at Oulton.”
Total Control Racing’s Tom Grice took seventh after an eventful race. “I’m quite happy with the finish everything considered, he said. “There was quite a bit of contact between me and Jake Packun but then I dropped him and chased down Chris Swanwick and found a way past.”
Swanwick finished eighth for Team Pyro, with Get On Track Developments’ Jake Packun taking ninth. “I got a great start but James Colburn had a bad one from the front,” he said. “Matt Allison had to avoid him and I had to go to the outside of Matt, but there was contact and it bent my steering. I then had contact with Grice which made the steering even worse. I’ve not had the best of weekends.”
If Packun’s weekend was bad, it was a worse one for Scuderia Vittoria’s Matt Allison. “I didn’t get a good start again, I just lit the tyres up too much and got wheelspin, which dropped me back into the gaggle of cars behind,” he explained.
“James had an even worse start ahead, but all of a sudden I got a whack in the rear and the next thing I was turned into the barrier. It certainly wasn’t in the script.”
There is now a month break until the fourth round of the AirAsia Renault Clio Cup UK which takes place at Cheshire’s fabulously undulating Oulton Park circuit on June 4-5.
AirAsia Renault Clio Cup UK fans can win flights to Kuala Lumpur this weekend thanks to title sponsor, AirAsia by listening to the following competition, downloadable from iTunes: http://tiny.cc/wlqwl.
Race two top ten results
1. Aron Smith Team Pyro 14 laps G
2. Paul Rivett Lumison BlueSquare Data/SVE +0.619s
3. Jack Goff Team Pyro +1.157s G
4. Adam Bonham Team Pyro +1.729s
5. Lee Pattison JHR Developments +2.171s M
6. James Dixon Total Control Racing +2.697s G
7. Tom Grice Team Pyro +8.551s G
8. Chris Swanwick Team Pyro +8.870s G
9. Jake Packun Get On Track Developments +19.860s G
10. Craig Currie Team Pyro +20.322s
Championship top ten results
1. Paul Rivett Lumison BlueSquare Data/SVE 161 pts
2. James Dixon Total Control Racing 140 pts
3. Aron Smith Team Pyro 134 pts
4. Jake Packun Get On Track Developments 107 pts
5. James Colburn Westbourne Motorsport 100 pts
6. Adam Bonham Team Pyro 90 pts
7. Jack Goff Team Pyro 89 pts
8. Tom Grice Total Control Racing 86 pts
9. Lee Pattison JHR Developments 85 pts
10. Chris Swanwick Team Pyro 81 pts
Results and standings for media purposes only, of no regulatory value