Aron Taylor-Smith believes the smoother Oulton Park track surface could potentially play into the hands of MG during this weekend’s British Touring Car Championship meeting as they look to kickstart their campaign.
MG endured a difficult triple-header at Thruxton, including a heavy impact for Taylor-Smith’s team-mate Daniel Lloyd, with the abrasive circuit characteristics of the challenging Hampshire circuit throwing their issues into sharp relief.
The team has since completed some much-needed testing on a rolling dynometer with the MG6 in a bid to close some of the deficit to their rivals due to a lack of pre-season testing.
“[Oulton] is a better surface for our type of car – it’s less bumpy which really helps, so that hopefully will steer us in the right direction,” said Taylor-Smith.
“The work done in the [last] two weeks will make or break how well our cars do there. If the engineers and the team can get a lot out of it we’ll be fine, so we’ll have to see.”
He also admitted the unique nature of Thruxton means that a number of setup developments gained through the first two meetings of the season became largely irrelevant for the sake of chasing performance that weekend.
“Thruxton is a curve ball and you can always expect it to throw stuff out the window that you’d started to learn.
“I think we still just haven’t found the sweet spot and our problematic area is massively exaggerated due to the nature and surface of the track, so if you were to pick a circuit on the calendar that would make our car perform at its worst, we’ve just done it
He admitted the team’s achilees heel so far has been it’s lack of pre-season mileage, but is hopeful the team can complete some testing following this weekend’s triple-header in Cheshire.
“To be honest those six or seven days [of testing] are absolutely important.
“You have to do them, and not doing them has been a hindrance, which has been a bit of a pain.
“It’s hard to say, I don’t want to blame it on that, but we could definitely be further up.
“That said, we have a bit more planned, we [had a day] before Oulton on the rig where the car could actually be optimised, and then following Oulton we’ll hopefully get a day of testing somewhere else. If that’s the case and they all come together, that will really help.”