Tom Chilton ‘gutted’ to retire from race two and miss out on...

Tom Chilton ‘gutted’ to retire from race two and miss out on reverse grid

Tom Chilton
Photo: PSP Images

Tom Chilton was ‘gutted’ to miss out on the opportunity to gain from the race three reversed grid at Oulton Park, after the Motorbase driver retired from race two following contact with Jake Hill.

Chilton had been running in 12th when he made contact with Hill on the exit of the hairpin after the first safety car phase, damaging his front-left wheel and forcing him to limp to the pits for repairs and retirement from the race.

After claiming only a handful of points for finishing in the same position in race one, Chilton was frustrated with his weekend’s results ahead of race three, with his race two retirement seeing him dropping to eighth in the standings and facing starting race three from the back of the grid.

“It’s frustrating because I think I would have finished around seventh or eighth,” said Chilton to TouringCars.Net. “The car was very strong, but I never got to show anyone because I was out before I could get a proper flying lap in as it was a lap and then a safety car period.

“The car did feel very strong and I was quite confident on the soft tyre especially after last year – the soft tyre was the tyre to be on.”

Chilton was critical of driving standards, believing that Hill’s relative lack of experience meant he did not have as much spatial awareness as he should have.

“He [Hill] came across on me on the exit, but on the other side I’m on the throttle as well. You could argue that he’s come across me and I’ve come into him, and it’s one of those racing incidents out of the hairpin.

“To be honest I thought because he was so wide going into it going around the outside of [Stephen] Jelley I thought he was going to end up on the outside kerb there, which is all flat and easy to run on. He didn’t and it didn’t work.

“I’m just annoyed because you’re hanging around people like Jake, who is obviously learning, at the back they’re just not quite as good with their mirrors and stuff.

“I shouldn’t be back there, I should be with the top boys at the front.

“I’m gutted because if I’d finished seventh or eighth, where I probably should have in race two, I’d then be on the reverse grid for a podium in the last one, which was always my plan this weekend after qualifying.

“I was quite confident it was all going in my favour to end up fifth in the championship after this weekend. I was sixth going into that last one and now I’m eighth.

“It’s all going the wrong way, and I’m probably going to drop a bit more in this race starting last.”