Morgan makes mighty start to 2017 BTCC season
Ciceley Motorspsort’s Adam Morgan made a stunning start to his 2017 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship campaign with three top six finishes at Brands Hatch, Kent, at the weekend including an Independents category win.
Adam’s Mac Tools-sponsored Mercedes-Benz A-Class qualified sixth fastest in a session punctuated by two red flags and changeable weather conditions that made life difficult for the teams. “The car has been working really well all day,” said the Accrington-based driver. “I was the first person to hit the rain when it came and I was on slicks so that was tricky but I’m confident for tomorrow.”
That confidence was well placed as Adam made a demon start and avoided a start line crash to take fourth at the first corner and then grabbed third on lap six with an incisive move at Graham Hill Bend. As early pace-setter Jeff Smith ran wide in his Honda Civic, reigning champion Gordon Shedden pounced and Adam chased through behind him to secure the place.
The Accrington flyer wasn’t finished yet though and charged up on to the tail of Shedden, looking to grab second place. He missed out by hundredths of a second as the cars took the chequered flag with Adam securing a third-placed finish. “I was catching Gordon but I wasn’t convinced it was worth risking everything with two more races to go. I decided it was better to bank the points.”
Adam’s podium finish put him third on the grid for race two but now had to carry the regulation success ballast on his Fuchs Lubricants-supported Mercedes. Now loaded with 57 kilos of weight, Adam battled with Rob Austin’s Toyota Avensis and briefly moved ahead at Paddock on lap nine, only for Austin to force a way back ahead. There was a late-race clash when Austin dived up the inside of Andrew Jordan’s BMW and knocked him sideways, right in front of Adam. Rather than slow and risk being overtaken by the pack behind, Adam nailed his foot to the boards and tagged the rear of Austin’s Toyota as the pair passed Jordan. With Austin later excluded for the move coming under a yellow flag (meaning no overtaking), Adam was promoted to fourth place. “Carrying all that weight made it hard, but I had a go at Austin and there was a bit of a rub. He got his own back so I tried to stay with him and we then caught Jordan, so fourth was another good haul of points.”
For the final race, with a semi-reversed grid, Adam’s Mac Tools Mercedes lined up fifth on the grid carrying 39 kilos of success ballast and running the option soft tyre. Again, Adam gave the Mac Tools, WIX Filters and Fuchs Lubricants guests plenty to cheer about a she hustled to fifth place overall, but significantly to win the Independents’ Trophy for the first non-manufacturer entry home.
“It’s been a brilliant weekend,” said Adam. “I should have let Colin Turkington past earlier in race three because defending him hurt my tyres, but to come home fifth and win the Independents’ Trophy is fantastic. We have never had as good a start to the season as this and it is a great way of saying thanks to Mac Tools for the support. We go to Donington at Easter looking for overall wins.”
Ciceley Motorsport’s Commercial Manager Norman Burgess said: “Adam has been fantastic this weekend and our sponsors, couldn’t be happier. To come away with an Independents race win is great but Adam is leading the Independents Trophy for drivers and Ciceley Motorsport is leading the Independents’ Team Trophy. It has been the ideal way to welcome Mac Tools on board and to thank our many guests who cheered Adam all weekend. Now, we need to put the silverware away and look forward to Donington and maintain the great pace we have shown at Brands Hatch.”
The next rounds of the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship are at Donington Park, Derbyshire, on April 16/17.
Adam Morgan and his Ciceley Motorsport Team are 4th in the Drivers Standings on 39 points he is 1st in the Independents Driver Standings. The Ciceley Motorsport Team are 1st in the Independent Teams championship and 5th in the Teams Standings.
Attached images provided by B2pjk Media, please credit where used [email protected]
For more information on Adam Morgan and Ciceley Motorsport, visit www.adammorganracing.co.uk
Contact the teams Commercial & Marketing Director Norman Burgess at [email protected]
For more information on Ciceley Motorsport , visit www.adammorganracing.co.uk
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