New TCN Logo

Upcoming events:

New TCN Logo

Rob Austin Racing duo ready for ‘big gamble’

Rob Austin and Hunter Abbott are primed for a make-or-break weekend as the British Touring Car Championship visits Silverstone, with the pair pinning their hopes of a competitive showing on a big setup gamble.

Austin’s eponymous squad come into the weekend in buoyant mood after the 33-year-old scored his second victory in the series at Rockingham three weeks ago (also his second at the circuit), with his results moving him into ninth in the championship standings – his highest placing since the opening weekend of the season.

The weekend was also something of a success for Abbott in the team’s second Audi, as he raced from 31st on the grid to 14th in race one before cracking the top ten for only the second time in his BTCC career in race two.

- Advertisement -

Much of the pair’s success was owed to a successful setup alteration prior to Sunday’s races, and as a result the team have opted to go bold once again at Silverstone – and while Austin expects the changes to take some time to bed in, he also believes that he has the potential to be fighting at the front once again.

“Our race weekend will start off with a big gamble when it comes to the set-up of both cars in the two free practice sessions,” said Austin. “My number one mechanic Matt Taylor and I have been working through a lot of suspension stuff in the workshop and believe we have a better understanding of what is required for Silverstone after how we got the car working on the Sunday at Rockingham.

“It’s never ideal to be going into free practice with such big changes to try but we are not blessed with manufacturer backing and infinite budgets so we have to maximise every moment of track time we get and take chances to try and find the operating window for qualifying.

“I think Matt and I do OK when you consider that we are up against teams with several full time engineers each. We have achieved some awesome things this year and if our theory is correct as it was at Rockingham and we find the sweet spot in the car’s set-up then I am all set to take on the big boys again.”

Abbott, meanwhile, was more cautious about predicting a repeat of his heroics of three weeks ago, but was nevertheless anticipating an exciting weekend for both the drivers and the fans.

“There is a lot to try in Saturday’s two free practice sessions at Silverstone after all the number crunching that has gone on back at base,” said Abbott. “Rob and I will start with different settings in opening free practice which will enable us to find out what works best on the cars.

“At Silverstone, because the lap is so short, everyone is chasing milli-seconds when it comes to qualifying. I’m obviously going there on a high after how things worked out at Rockingham but I’m under no illusions – on paper the Silverstone National circuit we’re racing on this weekend is not as strong for the Audi as Rockingham and if anything will come back to the front-wheel-drive cars.

“However, while it’s not the most challenging track lay-out from a driver’s point of view, a short lap means more laps for the fans who are the lifeblood of the championship. Plus Silverstone is very fast and wide and has a great knack of encouraging close racing which is what the BTCC is all about.”

- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -

Stay Connected


Must Read

- Advertisement -

Related News

- Advertisement -


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here