More podiums the target
Two podium finishes in the first two rounds of the BARC South East Quaife Cannons Tin Top Championship has given us confidence as we head into the next double-header at Brands Hatch on 30th April.
A third and second place finish last time out sees us in third position in the highly fought T2 class with just eight points covering the top three drivers. After some more set-up updates which include a new peddle box arrangement and corner weights, we are confident of another strong showing.
Brands Hatch is a track we know well with it being only a few miles from our base which also saw our first victory in the Peugeot last season.
There is a strong entry list for this weekend with twenty one drivers all competing for overall and class wins, and of course, our target remains to finish ahead of the two front-running Hondas. Do this and we should be there or thereabouts for more outright wins come the chequered flag.
The Brands Hatch Indy circuit is one I enjoy and I’ve had good results in the past. I plan to add to that tally, as the short circuit and range of corners should emphasise the stability of the car’s chassis and its strength under traction. We need to exploit the fact that the Honda’s carry around 60kgs of ballast, albeit with almost 100BHP extra, but the competition is going to be tough. To remain in the top three of the Drivers’ standings will be the goal.
Qualifying beings at 11:10 with race one at 15:40 and race two at 18:10. Once again, coverage of the race will be shown on Motors TV.
Race Preview: Ready for Brands Hatch Triple Header
Chris Bassett is preparing for a busy weekend of racing at Brands Hatch that will see him contest three races at the Kent circuit on 29 and 30 August.
Chris arrives at the latest rounds of BARC SE Cannons Tin Tops following a weekend of mixed emotions last time, where he set the seventh quickest time in qualifying to underline the potential of the Peugeot 205 GTi, before a broken brake master cylinder in race one forced retirement and a broken rear caliper halted progress in race two.
“Brands Hatch is my local track and I always try to do well there,” said Bassett. “While we certainly made progress last time out (also at Brands Hatch) it was disappointing not to really be able to show what the car can do. It shows glimpses and then bites us just as we think we are getting there. We’ve uprated the braking system, so that’s another new part – fingers crossed this time out we can enjoy some racing!”
“I am very much looking forward to a busy weekend,” said Bassett. “I am thankful to the team for all of the hard work they have put in between the last race. We have a pretty tough racing schedule over the next few weeks which also includes the GP circuit at Brands Hatch and then the possibility of trying a different race series which will see how far we’ve come with the development of the car.”
This meeting features a selection of races organised by BARC, including tin tops, single seaters and superkarts.
Qualifying will get underway at 17:45 on Saturday 29 August, with the three races the following day (Sunday 30 August) at 10:25, 14:40 and 17:55 respectively.
Keep up-to-date with Chris by following him on Twitter @Chris_Bassett
Race Report: Bassett Reflects on Brands Hatch Double
Well, what a week that was! After a last minute test session at Brands Hatch just two days before our comeback race, I am feeling pretty rung out, but, unlike last year, I have reason to smile.
Following the test on Brands Hatch Indy Circuit on the Thursday before Saturday’s action, the Peugeot needed some last minute adjustments – a broken clutch cable and a crack in the oil sump which needed to be welded up. Come Saturday’s qualifying session, the new engine still wasn’t fully run in but to end up qualifying 8th out of 27 cars (3rd in class) was pretty pleasing as it felt as though I wasn’t really pushing that hard – we still need more time in the car to set it up properly.
So, with spirits lifted and finally having some confidence in the car and engine; we were optimistic for a good points-scoring weekend. I made a good start going into Paddock Hill Bend and up to Druids passing three cars and up into 5th before I lost my brakes and pulled over to the side and slowly making my way back to the pits. Team mechanic Tom Burgess had a quick look at the car, but couldn’t find anything wrong so we headed back out onto the circuit. By the time I reached the same corner (Druids) the brakes had gone again; so I slowly made my way back to the pits where it turned out to be a broken brake master cylinder and the end of the race.
The time between races allowed us to fit a new brake master cylinder, but we knew we were in for a tough second race as we would be starting 25th on the grid because of the non-finish in race one. It seems to be a regular occurrence starting from the back of the grid, but it certainly makes it an interesting and entertaining race trying to make our way through the field!
And so it began – trying to make our way through the field and to the finish for the first time this season. By the end of the first lap, I had overtaken six cars. The next lap another two and set off in pursuit of Dominic Ryan and his Ford Fiesta. It was another lap before I was able to close up to the rear bumper of the Fiesta and able to pass Dominc going along Cooper Straight and into Surtees.
We seemed to be slightly down on power (more on that later). I spent the next four laps chasing the battle of Andy Baker (Peugeot 205) and Daniel Adams (Proton Satria). With us now starting to lap back markers, Daniel made a mistake going into Surtees, which slowed him down coming out of Clark and along Brabham Straight. I made my move down the inside under braking going into Paddock Hill Bend and into 7th place overall / 3rd in class behind Baker. The car became slower still along the straights but we began the chase to the other Peugeot 205.
Another lap, but this time going into Surtees the rear seemed ‘loose’ and the off-side wheel seemed to be loose. We limped back to the pits where we found out the problem behind our lack of speed – a broken rear brake caliper, possibly caused by the earlier broken brake master cylinder. The heat caused by the brake caliper being stuck on had caused the spigot ring inside the off-side rear wheel to melt and the wheel nuts to become loose. After some quick work by team mechanic Tom, we went back out on circuit and limped to a finish – we were determined to get our first points of the season, but effectively our race was over from the moment I pulled into the pits.
And so we ended the race weekend with our first points of the season and plenty of optimism going into the next round – a triple header at Brands Hatch on the Bank Holiday weekend at the end of August – again at Brands Hatch.