BTCC: Donnington Park National Circuit Preview
Written by Cameron Gale, Edited by Janvi Unni
The BTCC is back after many months away, and the championship returns looking slightly different than it was last season.
The first change is that two teams from last year have pulled out. Ciceley Motorsport and one of the oldest teams in BTCC, Team Dynamics. Ciceley Motorsport pulled out due to wanting to focus on historic racing, whilst team Dynamics boss Matt Neal said “ This has been an extremely difficult decision for us to make as a business. Unfortunately, with the current economic climate, we have not been able to secure the commercial partnerships we required to commit to the forthcoming BTCC season.
“I’ve been in the BTCC all my life and it has presented us with many fantastic opportunities and memories, so I’m extremely disappointed that we will not be directly involved and saddened for our dedicated employees, partners, fans and supporters.
“However, we still want to keep the Honda brand at the forefront of racing and ultimately winning races.
“Under our tenure, the car marque became one of the most successful manufacturers in the championship, second only to Ford in just half as many years. So, we aim to put to good use our resources and developments made over the winter by supporting One Motorsport in 2023 and helping them to win races and challenge for the Drivers’ and Teams’ Championships.”
“We would like to thank everyone involved in the BTCC, especially Alan Gow, who has supported us over the years,” concluded Neal. “We wish all the teams and drivers, particularly One Motorsport with Neil Brown Engineering, the best of luck for the forthcoming season. We hope to actively be back in the BTCC in the future.”
Some drivers have also transferred to different teams.
Dexter Patterson has gone from Laser Tools racing to Team Hard.
Daniel Lloyd has gone from Excelr8 Motorsport to Team Hard.
Daniel Rowbottom has gone from Team Dynamics to Napa Racing UK.
Sam Osborne has gone from Motorbase Performance to NAPA racing UK.
Jack Butel has gone from Excelr8 Motorsport to Team Hard.
Jade Edwards has gone from One Motorsport to Team Hard.
Adam Morgan has gone from Ciceley Motorsport to West Surrey Racing.
Aiden Moffat has gone to One Motorsport with Starline.
We also have some new faces.
Roman Pearson has made the jump from Mini Challenge to BTCC and has joined excelr8 Motorsport.
Nick Halstead has also joined excelr8 Motorsport.
Donington Park National Circuit consists of 4 right handers and 4 left handers with the best overtaking opportunities going down through Hollywood and the Crainer Curves, going up the hill into McLeans and Coppice and the Fogarty Esses.
Circuit length:1.98 miles
Race Distance: –
First BTCC Race:1977
Qualifying Lap Record: Jake Hill: 1:08.418s (104.13mph) 2022
Race Lap Record: Jake Hill: 1:09.211s (102.94mph) 2022
Previous race winners include:
Gordon Shedden, Tom Ingram, Jake Hill, Matt Neal, Gabriele Tarquni, David Leslie, John Cleland, Alan Menu, James Thompson and Yvan Müller.
- Nigel Mansell leads Mondeo in a very wet Donnington Park race (1998)
- Matt Neal winning as an independent for the first time in 1999.
So with the first round of the BTCC season just days away, who wouldn’t want to watch one of the most competitive series in England. All races are on ITV4 from 10:45 on Sunday 23rd April whilst qualifying will be held on itv.com from 15:40 on Saturday 22nd April.