The opening two rounds of the TCR UK Touring Car Championship were not just the beginning of the new season at Snetterton in Norfolk last weekend.
New for 2023 is the TCR World Ranking, where drivers score points via a dedicated system, which at the end of the year, will see the top 45 drivers in the TCR World Ranking, join the top 15 drivers who have completed in the TCR World Tour.
All 60 drivers will then compete in the TCR World Ranking Final at a location to be confirmed early next year to crown the TCR World Champion Driver, Team and Manufacturer.
24-car entry means maximum points available for TCR UK drivers in the TCR World Ranking
With 24 entries at the season opener and set for the season, the TCR UK Touring Car Championship has a high-scoring potential within the TCR World Rankings, with the maximum possible for any national TCR series.
The TCR World Ranking takes into account a list of eligible races amongst those of the TCR-sanctioned series/events.
Each series/event is allocated a Coefficient A of level determined by their status.
The ranking of each driver is determined by their last 20 results.
When a driver fails to take part in a TCR event during the last 30 weeks, every four weeks the oldest result will be deducted from their total.
Bruce Winfield moves up to 16th place in the TCR World Ranking
Bruce Winfield’s victory and third place in the two races helped the Area Motorsport Hyundai driver move up four positions in the ranking to 16th place overall, becoming the second-highest-placed British driver, moving ahead of Rob Huff.
Only TCR Europe regular Jack Young is the higher-placed driver from the United Kingdom, currently placed 14th.
Bruce is the highest-placed TCR UK driver in the rankings.
Josh Files and Alex Ley make significant gains in the TCR World Ranking
Winfield’s teammates Ley and Files both made great gains in the ranking as well, even though Files had a dramatic exit whilst leading the second race.
Ley was the highest climber in the top 100, moving up 37 positions, with the Hyundai Motorsport Junior Driver now 59th in the ranking.
His fellow Hyundai Motorsport Junior Driver Bradley Kent also made a strong recovery, despite having to start from the back from Race 1 following exclusion from qualifying. Kent gained 12 positions thanks mostly to his fourth-place finish in Race 2, and is just nine places outside of the top 100.
Files P2 in Race 1 moved the 2019 TCR Europe champion up to 52nd, up 24 places. If he hadn’t retired and had been able to win the second race, he’d now be 36th, well within the critical top 45 which qualify for the TCR World Ranking Final.
Chris Smiley close to top 20 after strong debut for the new Honda
Chris Smiley is now just outside of the top 20 in 21st place, still gaining six places despite only being able to finish the first race in the all-new Honda Civic Type R FL5.
Smiley scored a podium on the car’s debut in Race 1, and that helped him gain six spots in the ranking.
Unfortunately spinning on the dust kicked up from Winfield’s Hyundai i30 at the start of Race 2 hampered the Northern Irishman’s progress, who would have broken into the top 15 if he’d been able to score another podium.
Smiley, like Files and Ley, all are below the 20 rolling result threshold which is used in the KUMHO TCR World Ranking, meaning every result will mean they’ll make progress until they get to 20 race results. After this, they’ll start dropping their 20th oldest result every time they record a new result.
Lewis Brown the best-placed new entry
Lewis Brown’s victory in Race 2, and stunning run in Race 1 where he briefly moved ahead of reigning champion Chris Smiley’s Honda in his Chameleon Motorsport CUPRA Leon Competición, means Brown was the best-placed of the nine newcomers to TCR competition at the weekend.
Brown’s score of 10.50 points over the two races jumps him straight to 282nd position, of the now over 1,000 drivers included in the ranking after the races this weekend.
Jac Constable’s troubles cost him top 45 placing
Jac Constable’s problematic weekend has seen the Rob Boston Racing Audi driver drop out of the top 45, and all the way down to 53rd.
Hampered by a fuel pump issue in practice, Constable missed qualifying and started from the back in Race 1. He’d then retire from Race 1, while only finishing 19th in Race 2, following a penalty after contact with the Vauxhall Astra of Darelle Wilson on the final lap. These results meant a loss of ten positions.
TCR UK Drivers movements in the TCR World Rankings
The 2023 TCR UK Touring Car Championship is back in action in 4 weeks’ time, where rounds 3 & 4 will take place at Croft in Yorkshire.
We’ll provide another update on TCR UK driver progress in the World Ranking after that event.
You can purchase tickets for this event at the following link: https://www.croftcircuit.co.uk/racing/brscc