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Fighting Finale Performance for AmD Tuning

The AmD Milltek team finished their second season in the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship with a battling performance during the season finale at Silverstone.

The West Thurrock-based team, who run a turbocharged VW Golf Mk5 in the series headed to Northamptonshire and the ‘Home Of British Motorsport’, looking to finish their season on a high with a grid of thirty cars entered.

Martin Byford finished qualifying ahead of the first race in 24th and during the opening race he had worked his way into the top twenty before being forced to pit with a driveshaft issue.

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The penultimate race of the season saw Byford lose a lap early on due to another unscheduled pit stop, and ultimately wound up outside the top twenty in twenty fourth.

This meant that Byford would start the final race of the season from the same position and with the car the best it had been all weekend, Byford was able to climb seven places in the opening two laps and at the end of the 22-lap encounter, he finished inside the top fifteen – ahead of newly crowned Independents’ Drivers Champion James Nash and former double Champion James Thompson.

“I really enjoyed the final race and it was good way for us to finish the season,” he said. “The driveshaft problem in race one meant we were on the back foot for the rest of the day with such a large field, but to come from 24th on the grid to finish 15th is a good result for the team and the car was the best it’s been all weekend.”

Having joined the team before the sixth weekend of the season at Snetterton, Byford ended his part season in the BTCC with a best finish of fourteenth but he showed potential during his five weekends to break into the top ten positions.

“I have to admit that I’m gutted that I’ve not managed to break into the top ten and score a point in my half season because I feel we’ve deserved it on several occasions,” he said. “However, I’d like to think that I’ve proven myself and shown that I can compete against these guys and I feel that I can now call myself a touring car driver. The focus is now on working hard over the winter to get the budget together for a full season in the BTCC next year.”

The team finished the Championship twelfth in the HiQ Teams’ Championship and tenth in the Independents’ Team Championship and Shaun Hollamby; AmD Milltek Team Principal admitted that he had mixed feelings about the season as a whole.

“It was a tough weekend but it came to a good end in the final race,” he said. “Again, if the first race had ended differently then we could have been on for some points but that is motorsport for you. The important thing is that the car is in one piece and Martin has had another good run to finish the year.

“Overall I’d say the season has seen flashes of brilliance clouded with disappointment for us. So much work has gone into this year behind the scenes that I think we have deserved more but now we have to regroup, take stock and look at where the Golf stands for next season. We have to see what the finalised rules are for 2012 but we know that the VW has a good chassis and if the grid is all-turbo next year, we could have a more competitive package than we’ve had this year.”

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