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BTCC Donington 2013: Three win in Jack Sears Trophy

23 April 2013

The Jack Sears Trophy for S2000 cars saw three different winners at Donington Park, with James Kaye joining Liam Griffin in share of the lead after the second round of the year.

Griffin went into the weekend out front thanks to his double success at Brands Hatch, but the Addison Lee Motorbase driver would endure a tough weekend in the East Midlands with an engine issue hitting his challenge in two of the three races.

Sadly for Griffin, the only race in which his Ford Focus ran without issue was also the one where Kaye was able to make the most of the pace in his AmDTuning.com VW Golf – which proved to be the quickest S2000 car through practice and qualifying.

Kaye led the opening race from start-to-finish for his second victory of the campaign, although he too would fail to finish either race two or three, with a start-line accident in race two being followed by an electrical issue in race three.

“The car was strong all weekend at Donington Park and we really showed our potential throughout Saturday and then in the opening race,” he said. “Race one went well and it was good to earn our place on the podium again and then in race two, there was nothing I could do; I simply got caught up in it all when someone else had an incident.

“The team did a fantastic job to repair the damage there was to the car and it felt strong again in race three, but unfortunately there was an electrical gremlin that put us out which is a real shame as the victory was ours for the taking. While there is some disappointment that we've only come away from Donington with a single Jack Sears Trophy win to our name, I think we've put in a really good performance and can head to Thruxton in confident mood.”

The victory means Kaye is now level with Griffin on two wins, with the Ford driver frustrated not to take advantage of his rival's issues on race day.

“We had the same fuel starvation fault that we had in qualifying,” he said. “We changed everything and it worked for race one, then failed in race two so we changed it all again and it let us down again in race three – so this weekend really does feel like a lost opportunity.”

The issues for Kaye and Griffin meant two new winners in the remaining races, with Lea Wood emerging on top in race two after all five of his S2000 rivals were unable to finish.

It meant the Wheel Heaven/Houseman Racing man was able to make amends for race three at Brands Hatch, where he lost victory in race after failing he ride height test in his Vauxhall Vectra.

“It's absolutely fantastic,” he said. “It's been a long time coming – obviously we had a few problems at Brands Hatch with the ride-height infringement, so to come back from there and get a win makes it even better.”

With Wood then joining Griffin and Kaye in retirement, and with David Nye unable to start due to damage sustained in the start-line incident in race two, Joe Girling took honours in race three ahead of the SEAT of Warren Scott.

Jack Sears Trophy Standings (after Round 6 of 30):

1. Liam Griffin Addison Lee Motorbase Ford Focus ST 2
=. James Kaye AmDTuning.com VW Golf 2
3. Lea Wood Wheel Heaven/Houseman Vauxhall Vectra 1
=. Joe Girling M247 Racing Chevrolet Cruze 1
5. David Nye Welch Motorsport Ford Focus ST 0
=. Liam Griffin Team BMR Restart SEAT Leon 0


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