TCR UK Touring Car Championship – Rounds 7 & 8
Oulton Park Island – 8th June 2024

Reigning champion Carl Boardley returned to top form as he won Round 7 of the TCR UK Touring Championship from pole position at Oulton Park. Fellow CUPRA driver Adam Shepherd then held off Boardley’s challenge to take victory in Round 8 and retain the points lead ahead of next month’s trip to Croft in North Yorkshire.


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With all the action packed into one day at the challenging Cheshire venue, qualifying was held first thing in the morning on a wet track after earlier rain.

The asphalt surface was beginning to dry but it had not reached the stage for slick Goodyear tyres which would require too long to reach operating temperature. So most of the 15-strong field took to the circuit on used wet rubber, offering the best compromise between brand-new wets with deep grooves and the greater contact patch of a slick tyre.

Carl Boardley immediately set the pace in his CBM with Hart GT-prepared CUPRA Leon Competición TCR, back on song after the team discovered the issue that had taken the edge off its performance at previous rounds this year. Boardley’s first flying lap was some 0.074 seconds quicker than Adam Shepherd’s in his similar car run by Shepherd Motors with Area Motorsport.

Lacking previous wet running in the car, Shepherd pitted to refine his set-up and looked set to improve at the death, only to be denied by a red flag. Boardley also didn’t improve but they were split by Callum Newsham’s JH Racing Hyundai i30 N TCR in the closing minutes, just 0.031s slower than Boardley’s marker.

Joe Marshall’s Rob Boston Racing Audi RS3 LMS TCR wound up fourth, the local driver disappointed to not improve more after pitting for fresh rubber. Shepherd’s team-mate Darron Lewis impressed with the fifth-fastest time, less than two tenths down on Marshall, while Brad Hutchison (Bond It with MPHR CUPRA Leon Competición TCR) was sixth.

Luke Sargeant (Area Motorsport with RS Vehicle Sales CUPRA Leon Competición TCR) and Will Powell – returning from knee surgery in a new Go-Fix Honda by Sport77 Honda Civic Type R FK7 TCR  – completed the top eight. Powell, however, would have to start from the back of the grid due to his change of car. His old car was now in team-mate Brad Thurston’s hands, but the under-the-weather driver didn’t record a time after an early trip into the gravel.

Will Beech topped the Gen 1 runners in his Capture Motorsport-run Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR ahead of regular rival Rick Kerry (EDF Motorsport CUPRA TCR). Championship promoter Stewart Lines, on his return to driving duties, qualified third in class aboard his Maximum Motorsport with MPHR Audi RS3 LMS TCR.


Round 7 – Race Report

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With the track now dry, a fantastic start catapulted Shepherd ahead of Newsham into second. He was ready to challenge Boardley for the lead too: the pair ran side-by-side through the fast left-hander at Cascades but, as Boardley’s cold rubber broke traction his car slid into the side of Shepherd’s.

Both survived, and Boardley was kept hold of the lead. But Shepherd wasn’t done. He got a better exit from the double-apex right-hander at Druids towards the end of the lap and jinked right, then left towards Lodge. Again he tried the outside line but Boardley eased him wide and the pair then bumped their way through Deer Leap and over the stripe onto the second lap.

The action had left Shepherd with a broken left-rear hub and after a few wild moments he accepted that his priority must be to bring the car home rather than risk a non-score.

Behind the lead pair, Newsham had initially run third but was passed by the fast-starting Hutchison into the Hislops chicane. Newsham then lost fourth too when he was helped off at Old Hall by Marshall – who received a grid penalty for his troubles.

Out front, while Boardley escaped, Shepherd struggled. He ran wide at the Island hairpin and was passed by both Hutchison and Marshall. The Audi driver then set the fastest lap of the race as he pursued Hutchison but it took until the second half of the race to breach his defences with a clean dive past at Cascades.

Marshall began catching Boardley in the closing stages, but the champion had things under control as he took his first win of the season. Marshall could be happy with second, albeit frustrated to just miss out on a maiden win again, while Hutchison completed the podium.

Shepherd continued to drop back but held off Sargeant for fourth and valuable points towards his title challenge. Sixth for Lewis also secured Goodyear Diamond Award honours, for drivers aged 40 and over.

Beech led home Kerry for Gen 1 Cup laurels, with Steve Laidlaw’s Capture Motorsport Hyundai splitting the pair from third-placed Stewart Lines and Mark Smith who was fourth in his Richmond Fire CUPRA.

It was a tough race for the Sport77 squad, as Powell was tipped into a spin approaching the Island hairpin for the first time, where he collected team-mate Thurston, albeit not as heavily as he might have done. After a pitstop, Powell returned to complete the finishers in 13th.


Round 8 – Race Report

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Lines’s 10th place overall in the opening race meant he was on pole position for the reversed-grid finale, with Laidlaw alongside and Kerry and Beech on row two.

And just like Boardley earlier in the day, Lines’s cold rear tyres broke loose at Cascades on the opening lap. This time though, Lines was sent into a full spin. He did well to point the car off track and give the pack the best chance of avoiding him.

But unfortunately, the concertina effect caused Beech to spin in sympathy and an unsighted Marshall collected the Golf head-on. Both were instantly out and red flags flew to clear up the incident.

Meantime, Shepherd had already been tipped into a spin at the first corner. He managed to avoid making heavy contact with the barrier and ploughed into the gravel. Crucially, Shepherd somehow dug himself out – otherwise, as a non-runner, he would not have been able to compete in the restarted race.

With the time ticking on, and no desire to risk more incidents on cold tyres, the race restarted in grid order but behind the safety car. That caught some drivers out, including Boardley, with the rear half of the field rather strung out as racing for real got under way.

Without pressure from Boardley behind, Shepherd carved through the field into fourth position on the opening lap as Lines led. Third-placed Lewis ran wide as he challenged Laidlaw for second, which let Shepherd into third. He then dispatched Laidlaw on the approach to Cascades for second and Lines did not make his life difficult as he took the lead over Hill Top later in the lap.

As Lines became something of a cork in the bottle, Boardley worked his way into third and then eventually despatched the erstwhile leader at the end of lap four of nine. But by that stage, Shepherd’s lead stood at a seemingly insurmountable 6.7s.

That changed when Mark Smith spun into the gravel at Cascades. A safety car was required and Shepherd’s lead was eliminated. There was time for two laps when the race restarted, and Shepherd managed it well. He led by 0.8s as they crossed the line and marginally increased that over the penultimate lap.

Boardley recorded the fastest lap – worth a valuable point – on the final tour but it wasn’t enough to let him mount a lead challenge as Shepherd took victory. The winner survived a scare after initially being penalised for having crew still working on the car on the grid when the one-minute board was shown, before that was overturned.

His team had played a crucial role in the win, checking the car over and performing a quick tyre change after its gravelly excursion. No matter that it was a spare rear that had gone on the front-left, giving the car a significant imbalance – it hardly seemed to affect Shepherd’s pace.

Behind the top two, Lewis was delighted to secure an impressive maiden podium (and another Goodyear Diamond Award success), while Newsham beat Sargeant to fourth despite running wide at Druids on the final lap. Sargeant himself had passed Laidlaw into Hislops on the previous lap.

Seventh overall secured Gen 1 Cup honours for Kerry, who passed Lines on the final tour. In an attritional race, Thurston was happy to record a finish, ninth overall. His team-mate Powell had again hit trouble, forced out when his throttle pedal went to the floor.


Shepherd now holds a 28-point lead (40 are awarded for a victory) over Boardley in the standings, with battle set to resume at Croft on 13/14 July. Newsham is another 39 points back, with Marshall and Hutchison fourth and fifth. The top six is completed by Lewis, who has a healthy lead over Kerry in the Goodyear Diamond Award.

Kerry leads the way in the Gen 1 Cup, 36 points clear of Beech, with Smith in third.

Driver quotes

Round 7 winner, Carl Boardley
“That was good, wasn’t it? Adam [Shepherd] and I had a real good battle for a couple of laps.

“I never got my rear tyres  in for three/four laps – every time I turned in, I was just losing the rear. I was having to be so, so progressive with the throttle and keep the diff engaged. But once it came to life it was just a case of stretching your legs. I backed off a little towards the end, and just kept Joe [Marshall] in sight.

Round 8 winner, Adam Shepherd
“When I was in the gravel, I was like, ‘If I end up here, you’re not allowed to restart if you cause a red flag.’ I just crept out, and luckily there was a red flag which meant we re-gridded.

“I had rear tyre pressure on the front-left, so the car was great through lefts, awful through rights! But the team were unbelievable; we changed the clutch between race one and race two, changed the rear hub. So it’s unbelievable to end with a win. Huge thanks to all the team, Shepherd Motors, Area Motorsport and my sponsors 5G Communications.”

Next time – Croft!

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The 2024 TCR UK Touring Car Championship is back in action in less than 5 weeks time, on Saturday 13th July and Sunday 14th July where rounds 9, 10 & 11 will take place at Croft in North Yorkshire.

The North Yorkshire venue provides the scene for the halfway point of the 20 race season. Racing action will take place on the Saturday and Sunday with both days livestreamed on the official TCR UK YouTube channel.

You can now purchase tickets for the next event of the 2024 season, at Croft, from their website:

To find out more about the TCR UK Touring Car Championship visit for more information and how to get involved.

To learn more about the 2024 TCR UK Touring Car Championship Calendar events, visit for more information.

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