25th July 2023

With the summer break now over, CarStore Power Maxed Racing return to action in the Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship at Croft Circuit this weekend [29-30 July].

The Bidford-on-Avon team resume their push for both the Independent Teams and Jack Sears Trophy titles at the 2.1-mile Yorkshire venue after a six-week summer hiatus, having worked hard at their 2023 campaign thus far.

In just half a season, the team has already exceeded its total points haul for 2022, with the new trio of Aron Taylor-Smith, Mikey Doble and Andrew Watson pushing the Vauxhall Astra to the sharp end of the grid.

The synergy between the drivers and team has delivered a number of highlights, including Jack Sears Trophy victories at Donington, Thruxton and Oulton Park last time out, a steady haul of points finishes, plus some top-ten shootout appearances in qualifying.

As a result, the team enters Croft 35 points shy of the summit in the Independent Teams’ standings. Just ten points separates the top three among the Jack Sears runners, with Doble and Watson looking to go on the offensive from second and third place respectively.

Offering a blend of high and low-speed corners, technique is the key to achieving a lap time around Croft. The heavy breaking zone at Tower, the sweeping Jim Clark Esses and the final hairpin offer plenty of overtaking opportunities, and the annual trip to Yorkshire often delivers a typically action packed weekend of BTCC action.

Qualifying kicks off the competitive action at 15:25 (BST) on Saturday, after two free practice sessions to get dialled in. Sunday features the usual triple-header of ITV4-televised action, with lights out at 12:10, 14:35 and 17:00 respectively.

Andrew Watson (#11) said: “I’m feeling really good, in general, heading to Croft. We had a really positive tyre test during the break, and the gap gives the team a proper chance to strip the cars back to the components and then re-prep them.”

“I’m feeling refreshed and re-charged in myself. We had great pace during the first half of the season but didn’t always convert it. I’ve learnt a lot, and I’m looking forward to putting it into practice, starting at Croft.”

Aron Taylor-Smith (#40) said: “As a team, we can definitely go into the second half of the season with a lot of confidence. We’ve made a lot of progress on the chassis, especially at the Goodyear tyre test, and we can be really in contention going forwards.”

“Croft is the start of a sequence of tracks which are among my favourites, too, so that’s always nice. I truly believe we have one of the fastest packages underneath us.”

Mikey Doble (#88) said: “I’m absolutely chomping at the bit to get back on track in the BTCC this weekend at Croft. I’ve had a really strong first half of my rookie season, and I’m looking to continue that form and pick up more Jack Sears Trophy victories, and some overall points finishes over the remaining five race weekends.”

“Croft – much like Thruxton last time out – is in my ‘top 3’ circuits, as a driver. So, I’ll be aiming for a similarly strong qualifying result, and that should set us up for another string of good finishes.” © 2024
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