Dan Lloyd makes it seven wins from eight in 2018 in a relatively calm second race of the day at Castle Combe.
Lloyd led every single lap of the reverse grid race from pole position to take the victory. For the second time today he made a poor start and allowed second place starter Carl Swift to run alongside him heading down to Quarry. However Lloyd had the inside line for the corner and slotted into a lead that would never be challenged. Lewis Kent in the Essex and Kent Motorsport Hyundai tried to follow Lloyd through but could not quite make the move stick.
So at the end of lap one the order was Lloyd, Swift, Kent, Ollie Taylor, Jessica Backman, Derek Palmer in the DPE Motorsport Alfa Giulietta, Andreas Backman and Stuart Lines in the second Maximum Motorsport CUPRA. From there the race was reasonably calm compared to the first encounter earlier today. The main moves coming from Taylor as he made his way passed Kent on lap four after a slight off track moment from the Hyundai driver and then passed Swift on lap seven to move up to second.
In the fifteen minutes that followed Lloyd pulled out a lead of nearly eight seconds to Taylor who pulled out nearly the same lead to rest of the pack. The fight for third was close with some changes of position, mainly due to mistakes getting off line on the super-quick Castle Combe layout.
The main incident of the race came on lap fifteen as the pack went into Camp corner, the last corner of the lap with an apex speed around 80mph. Sixth placed Stuart Lines tried to dive down the inside of Jessica Backman’s fifth placed VW Golf but was nowhere near alongside enough to make the move work. The pair touched and both were fired off towards the outside barrier at scary speed. Both drivers emerged from their damaged cars with no injuries as the safety car was bought out.
When the clear-up was completed and the safety car pulled back in there were four minutes left on the clock. Lloyd caught Taylor out on the restart and promptly set the fastest lap of the race with a 1m07.732 to effectively seal the race victory. Carl Swift kept Taylor honest in the final laps but was unable to make a move and in fact had the settle for fifth place in the end due to picking up a five-second penalty for track limit transgressions. That left Andreas Backman to pick up his second third place finish of the day with Derek Palmer’s Alfa in fourth and Lewis Kent rounding out the top five. (EDIT – Swift’s penalty was rescinded meaning he picked up the final podium place).
For the first time this year Dan Lloyd leaves a TCR UK round without being the highest place scorer over the course of the weekend. Following a pole position, win and a second place that honour goes to Ollie Taylor. Despite this Lloyd still leads the series with a massive gap to second place Taylor with three rounds and six races left of the season.
The next round takes place at Oulton Park on 4th August with the full programme taking place over one day on a Saturday. This will leave the teams little room for error over the weekend and will work the drivers hard. We are looking forward to it already!
Feature Image credit – TCR UK (tcruk.co.uk)