2015 Season off to a Great Start!
Wins and Records set by Owen Developments turbos!
Quite a start to the season for Owen Developments boosted teams and drivers; victories all over the UK as well as in the United States and a new record as well for good measure! Here are the highlights from the British Touring Car Championship, British Drift Championship, Indy Lights and Festival of Power at Santa Pod.
British Touring Car Championship - Brands Hatch, Donington
The 2015 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship set off in sensational style at Brands Hatch this weekend (4/5 April) as Rob Collard, Gordon Shedden and Matt Neal claimed a win apiece at the famous Kent circuit. All three races went down to the wire with each winning margin being less than half a second.
Andy Priaulx grabbed the headlines in qualifying by taking pole position on his series return, although his soft tyres eventually fell away and the triple World Touring Car champion had to relinquish the lead to WSR team-mate Collard. Collard produced his own faultless display, initially blasting from fifth on the grid up to second on the opening lap, before making his move for victory. The all-new Honda Civic Type R then went on to score a superb double with Shedden taking a memorable win that had the huge crowd on its collective feet and Neal winning the final race of the day.
When the BTCC moved on to Donington for the next round the three most successful drivers in the BTCC field took a win apiece in a thrilling triple-header. With seven drivers’ championships between them it was the class of Jason Plato, Colin Turkington and Matt Neal that rose to the surface on a brilliant day of racing in Leicestershire. Team BMR’s Plato wasted little time in reaching the race one summit. He immediately blasted by Gordon Shedden’s Honda Civic Type R off the line and had enough grunt in his VW CC to be nudging the sister car of Turkington into the first corner before passing him later in the lap. He would work on building an unassailable lead and taking the win.
It was to be Matt Neal who earned bragging rights as the first double victor of the year after he came out on top of a relentless multi-car battle in the final bout. Power Maxed Racing’s impressive rookie Josh Cook started the race from pole position but would eventually succumb to the pressure on him. In race two Team BMR’s Turkington made it by the pole-sitting machine of Shedden on lap one, and although the pair scrapped ruthlessly early on, the VW eventually pulled away to take a comfortable victory. Such has been the competitiveness to the start of the 2015 BTCC season that Turkington became the fifth different driver to win in the opening five rounds. It was to be Matt Neal who earned bragging rights as the first double victor of the year after he came out on top of a relentless multi-car battle in the final bout.
After two rounds, Neal leads the Championship from Turkington and Shedden, with Jordan and Plato not far behind. Bring on Thruxton!
British Drift Championship - Lydden Hill
Owen Development's first round as a sponsor of the British Drift Championship was at Lydden Hill at the weekend. Last year Owen Developments supported Jack Shanahan (Driftworks, GTX4088R) took his first BDC win at the opener and in his refreshed Nissan was out to repeat his success. Jack qualified 7th, not far off fellow Owen Developments supported driver and reigning Champion Shane O'Sullivan (Team Japspeed, ODGTX3076R-M), and fought his way to the final against his new team leader Phil Morrison.
After a close final, Jack would force a mistake from Phil to take his second BDC win at the same round as he took his debut win last year! Joining Jack on the podium in 3rd was fellow Owen Developments supported driver Danny Eyles (Team Japspeed, ODGTX3076R-M).
Indy Lights - St. Petersburg, FL, Long Beach, CA
The names of Ed Jones and his Carlin team might not have been especially well known in North America prior to the start of the season, but they have certainly made their presence felt by claiming three straight victories with the new Dallara IL-15 chassis and it's 2.0L Owen Developments turbocharged AER engine. Jones, who was born and still is based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, and carries British citizenship, dominated the opening two races on the streets of St. Petersburg, Fla., then scored another win this past Sunday in Long Beach, when he profited from an incident between two of the top three qualifiers at the first corner.
Ed Jones leads the Championship at this early stage by 26 points from Spencer Pigot, with fellow Britons Jack Harvey and former F1 driver Max Chilton filling out the top four places in the standings.
New Street Eliminator ET Record
Mark Todd's Project GTO (twin GTX5533R) made its first return to the track this weekend at the Festival Of Power at the Official Santa Pod Raceway. To say it went better than expected would be an understatement. One check out pass was followed by a 7.48 and a 7.47 @ 192mph pb to claim the Top Speed Street Eliminator ET Record.