For BTCC driver Phil Bennett a weekend off from Britain's premier saloon car series usually means yet more racing. This past weekend it was Snetterton and the Willhire 500...

So what does the average BTCC driver do on his weekend off? Well, if you're current championship leader Yvan Muller, there's sure to be some random Jet Skiing record to be challenged somewhere in the world. If you're reigning champion James Thompson, there's the prospect of getting muddy somewhere around the UK as he tackles the British Rally Championship. But for Proton's Phil Bennett there's the prospect of some more racing for the driver in the BTCC series who probably spends the most time during the year behind the wheel of a race car.

As well as his duties for the Petronas Syntium Proton team in the British Touring Car Championship, Phil is taking part in some three further series. First there's racing a Recaro Porsche 996 GT3 on the infamous Nurburgring Nordschliefe. Then there's racing a Radical SR3 in the Enduro series and finally there's racing a Honda Integra R with Mardi Gras & JAG in the Britcar European Eurdurance Racing Club.

In was in the final series that Phil was out in action this past Saturday as he took in the Willhire 500 at Norfolk's Snetterton circuit. No doubt buoyed by the upturn in fortunes last time out in the BTCC series at Rockingham, Phil was in the thick of the action from the off.

So with most professional drivers these days preferring to concentrate on one series how did Phil's participation in endurance racing come about? "John George, who races for Mardi Gras in Clios, bought this Honda to do the long distance championship, the EERC, and he wanted me to share the car with him which I was more than happy to do," explains Phil.

"We've had quite a good run in the car so far this season, we've had two wins and we're leading our class here," he continued as the Willhire 500 had completed 200 of its 500 minutes duration. A repair to a broken damper on the car was undertaken and the car then went on to take the class victory after over eight hours racing had taken place.

So what is the approach to the racing from Phil, on what would otherwise be his weekend off? "You obviously want to try to do as well as you can, but the motivation why I'm doing it is just for fun really," says Phil. "The touring cars is my job and that not only pays the bills but there's a reasonable amount of pressure with it because it is quite high profile, your reputation is on the line every weekend, and obviously a manufacturer expects you to do a good job for them."

The second leg of the Willhire 500 saw plenty of action for Bennett's Mardi Gras Integra Type R which did mean the red JAG communications machine did have to make a few visits to the pits for a talking to from the marshals. Despite this Bennett's car came home in a comfortable first in class position which equated to third in the overall standings.

Bennett definitely one of the hard chargers in the field and to show for this he was nominated by the attending media as driver of the day. "It's nice to do a bit of racing, and do it for fun," Bennett explains. Sound bloke.