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Racing in the UK

Thompson signs for Trade Price Cars Racing

Bobby Thompson has signed for Trade Price Cars Racing for the 2020 Kwik Fit British phaeton Championship season.

The 23-year-old from Hornchurch is the first driver who confirmed with the team for what is going to be its second season in Britain’s premier racing series, with the second part of a replacement line-up to be announced in due course.

Trade Price Cars Racing will once more field a pair of Audi S3s next year on the rear of a shocking 2019 season that included a fine win at Knockhill, and ended with the team sitting fourth within the Independent Teams’ Championship.

As with many young drivers, Thompson started his career in karting before taking the step into auto racing, initially within the Ford Fiesta Championship before two meetings in British Formula Ford in 2014, where he picked up six top-10 finishes in six starts.

With a long-term ambition to undertake and make it into touring cars, Thompson reverted back to tin tops for 2015 with an entry into the Volkswagen Racing Cup, securing his maiden win at Snetterton on the way to 10th within the championship standings.

Improving to fifth place overall 12 months later, Thompson then became the person to hammer in the highly-competitive series in 2017 as he stormed to the championship title in impressive fashion, taking six wins and only failing to form stage fourfold all season.

That opened the door for a dream enter the BTCC and in two seasons within the series so far , he has shown his pace with variety of top 10 finishes at the wheel of a VW CC, including sixth place at the 2019 season opener at Brands Hatch.

Now at the wheel of the Trade Price Cars Racing Audi – arguably one among the foremost improved cars on the grid in 2019 – Thompson will hope to regularly challenge for top 10 finishes, together with his ultimate goal being to fight for a primary podium and to launch a bid for the Jack Sears Trophy, hospitable drivers who have yet to secure a top-three finish within the series.

Following a planned pre-season testing programme, Thompson will make his Trade Price Cars Racing debut when the 2020 campaign kicks off at Donington Park on the weekend of March 28/29.

Categories
Racing in the UK

British motorsport in 2019 headlines

Although Formula 1, the World Rally Championship, and the British Touring Car Championship take the sport’s limelight, they account for only 40 of the 30,000 competition licence holders in the UK. Competitive motorsport alomost takes place every weekend of the year.

In fact, the 2019 season of motorsport has been a mixed affair with external pressures heavily weighing on the sport and the ability of the participants to commit their time and money to it remaining a key factor. The groundswell of opinion against noise, safety, fossil fuels, litigation concerns, a shortage of volunteer officials, and even Brexit uncertainty have somehow impacted the sport.

However, motorsport continues to deliver excitement and enjoyment to thousands of people. The year 2019 has provided several delighting success stories right across the sport.

In racing, proper low-cost competition has thrived. The new Citroën C1 Challenge at Silverstone broke all records with a total of 100 cars and 500 drivers for a 24-hour marathon. Dozens of novices appeared in the near-standard cars with an awful lot of damaged cars after 24 hours. Unluckily, a second round-the-clock marathon that was planned for Anglesey in September had to be binned because of a dire shortage of marshals.

Meanwhile, the Classic Sports Car Club get a strong pace with its winning formula of longer races to cover just about any car. The CSCC was flying when the traditional racing clubs such as the British Racing and Sports Car Club or the British Automobile Racing Club were feeling the pinch.

Away from racing, national-level forest rallying also had an average year when the cost of competing reached at an alarming rate. The recent Roger Albert Clark Rally pointed out that many crews are now searching for a longer-distance adventure than the traditional 45-stage-mile events in one day.

The real rallying expansion was in the growing number of special stages that ran on closed public roads. There are six events that have been run since the relevant mainland laws of the UK were changed and competitors have queued up in order to tackle special stage rallying in the lanes.

The motorsport events had another strong season in both hillclimbs and sprints. The big venues such as Prescott and Shelsley Walsh frequently draw overflowing entries and a lot of them come from newcomers. Competitive timed motorsport doesn’t come any accessible or cheaper than this.