Liam McMillan has been forced to miss his second straight meeting in the HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship after failing to rebuild his engines in time for the meeting at Croft.
The Maxtreme driver had been forced to miss Oulton Park after engine builder Oreca refused to return his three 16v motors due to an ongoing dispute with BTC Racing – the team McMillan purchased his SEAT Toledos from during the off-season.
While McMillan was able to collect the engines following the Oulton Park meeting, none of the powerplants had been rebuilt – with one of the 16v engines coming back in five boxes. A number of parts had been removed and were missing from a 20v engine which had also been taken to Oreca.
McMillan had set about rebuilding the engines in time for Croft, but a delay in the arrival of a number of manufactured parts to finish the job means the work won't be completed before the middle of next week.
As a result, the teenager will now turn his focus to the second half of the season, with Snetterton being his next outing after the summer break.
“I'm absolutely gutted to be missing the BTCC race weekend at Croft, but we've done everything we possibly could to be there; what's stopped us is completely outside our control. We collected our engine parts last Wednesday and started to sort the big jigsaw puzzle out on Thursday – and it was only then that we discovered that all the parts had not been returned, as we had been led to believe. Getting parts manufactured is not a problem, but some crucial components will take a week to ten days to manufacture and that's too late for Croft.
“We've had a few ups and downs in the first half of our first BTCC season, both on and off the track, but racing at this level it's proving to be a fantastic experience. We can now use the summer break to get all our engines rebuilt to the standard we want and restart our BTCC programme at Snetterton.
“Snetterton is my local track. I've raced there more times than anywhere else, it's the place I drove the Toledo for the first time – albeit on a very cold winter's day – and we have a good idea of what set-up may work best around there. For me, it's the perfect venue to return to the BTCC grid and try and score my first top-ten race result. We'll have a fresh 16 value engine to play with, and that will give us the power we need to score some very good results – at Snetterton and all the other circuits in the second half of the season.”