Smith shines to seal highest BTCC finish to date at Snetterton 300
August 14, 2012 by Aron Smith Press Office
Redstone Racing’s Aron Smith recovered from an edgy start to the day (12th August), at Norfolk’s renowned Snetterton 300 circuit to complete round 18 of the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship with a personal best result of sixth position to in Britain’s premier saloon car championship.
The opening race of the day on the 2.99 mile circuit saw Motorsport Ireland’s Young Driver of the year, Smith, initially jump to tenth position before suffering a frustrating end to the race which saw him drop down the order after opting for an overly cautious setup on his Ford Focus S2000 to preserve his tyres in the heat.
Left with it all to do in round 17 after his round 16 woes, the 2011 AirAsia Renault Clio Cup Vice Champion got away well off the line to throw himself into contention for a top ten birth during the opening stages of the first lap, to which the young Irishman duly took as he completed the first lap of the race.
Despite now possessing a more competitive racer, Smith went on to complete the 12 lap race in a credible tenth position after a fine mid race battle with Dave Newsham saw the young Irishman hold is own as he looked to progress further up the order.
After recovering well in the first two races, round 18 presented Smith with the perfect opportunity to exit the weekend with two top ten finishes, and after getting off the line well, Smith survived early exchanges with his BTCC counterparts to bring home his Redstone Racing Ford in seventh position, however he would later be promoted to sixth position after the exclusion of Honda Racing’s Gordon Shedden, sealing a personal best finish in the championship.
On a day that saw Smith face a real test of character, the racer, renowned for his flat out speed and determination, duly delivered a successful performance and remains confident that the momentum can build as he continues his hunt for a top ten championship finish.
“We had quite a tough start to the day,” said Smith. “In the first race we opted to choose a less aggressive setup as there was a fear that our tyres would struggle in the scorching temperatures, unfortunately the setup that we chose was a little too safe and we suffered because of that, especially on the restart which saw me get bundled out at Nelson which lost me seven places.”
“We decided that we had nothing to lose in the last two races of the day, so we changed to a more aggressive setup and the car felt brilliant, I was very happy to have a competitive car to produce my best showing of the year to date.”
“The team did a brilliant job today and I hope that we can carry this momentum forward on to Knockhill now as it is a place that I believe that we’ll be very strong if last year is anything to go by.”
The Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship will resume action again in just two weeks time at Fife’s Knockhill circuit for rounds 19, 20 & 21.
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