Bank Holiday Monday’s (29th August) meeting at Donington Park hosts rounds 12 and 13 of the 15-round 2022 TCR UK Championship and, with competitors unable to count the final two rounds at Snetterton in October as either of their season’s two dropped scores, the outcome of the second visit to Donington this weekend is going to shape the shoot-out for the title.
In round one at Oulton Park in April, Chris Smiley got his 2022 TCR UK campaign off to a perfect start by taking his Restart Racing Honda Civic Type R FK7 from pole position to victory, the former BTCC front-runner making a seamless transition to the TCR UK grid. Round two later the same day witnessed history in the making when Jessica Hawkins became the first British woman to claim overall victory in a touring car race, the Area Motorsport by FastR driver taking her CUPRA from second on the grid to an emphatic win ahead of the 24-car field.
Around Donington Park’s International circuit in May, Max Hart delivered a perfect performance, the young Irishman taking his JamSport Racing Hyundai i30N to a commanding victory in rounds three and four. Ant Whorton-Eales also starred at the Leicestershire circuit, putting the JamSport Racing Subaru in the lead for the first time in the UK series.
At Brands Hatch in June, it was history in the making once again, when 2020 and 2021 TCR UK champion Lewis Kent recorded his first win of the season in round five and in doing so, provided the Essex & Kent Motorsport-run Hyundai Veloster with its debut victory in Britain, in TCR UK’s 50th race. In round six, a frantic 25 minutes saw a charging Jac Constable in his Power Maxed Racing CUPRA take his first win of the year.
A third action-packed 25 minutes at Brands Hatch witnessed another TCR UK first when 17-year-old Alex Ley became the championship’s youngest ever race winner. The teenager did it again in the very next race, which took place when the championship made its second visit of the season at Oulton Park in July – this time around the Island circuit. Then in round nine, the championship welcomed its seventh winner, with Jamie Tonks scoring his very first TCR UK victory in his Area Motorsport with FastR CUPRA.
The next two rounds took place at Castle Combe on 6th August, wherein the first race Bruce Winfield grasped victory on the very final corner when the leader up until that point Adam Shepherd slid wide with a puncture. End-of-race jeopardy was also in play for race two, when the leader until the halfway point Alex Ley slipped back to third place, only to be elevated back to first when Jac Constable and Matthew Wilson were allocated time penalties for false starts.
Proving that consistency pays off, Isaac Smith sits at the top of the table on 312 points, Chris Smiley second on 280 and Lewis Kent third on 234. However, when points are dropped from the drivers’ two lowest scores – as per the championship regulations – the top three positions read: Smiley: 277, Smith: 273 and Kent: 225. Andy Wilmot leads the Goodyear Diamond Trophy for drivers over 40 and Isaac Smith the Tom Walker Memorial Trophy for those who are new to the championship or have not visited the podium in previous years.
The action gets underway at Donington Park with a 30-minute Qualifying session starting at 10.50, followed by the first 25-minute race at 13.35 and the second at 16.30. All three instalments can be watched live on the following platforms:
TCR UK is supported by Goodyear, Maximum Networks, Liqui Moly, Corbeau, MaxiCloud Hosted Telephony, Co-ordSport, Berkshire Turbo, Joyce Design, Shepherd Compello Motorsport Insurance, Woya Digital and Sunoco. The Championship is administered by Club Time Attack.