Daniel Lloyd has confirmed that he will race in this weekend’s British Touring Car Championship races at Croft, even though he admits he is facing an ‘insane’ damage bill for his accident at Oulton Park.
The Excelr8 Motorsport driver crashed out on the opening lap of the final race at Oulton Park just under two weeks’ ago, when contact with Rory Butcher at Hilltop pitched him hard into the barriers before his car bounced back onto track and into the path of BMW’s Colin Turkington.
Lloyd and Turkington escaped without major injury, with both drivers set to compete in this weekend’s fifth event of the season.
“Physically I’m fine, I’m not in any pain at the moment,” said Lloyd. “I’ve done all my physio work, Nick [physio] has given me all the bits I needed to do and it’s all gone really well.
“The team has been amazing, and they are fixing the car and I am going to be out for this weekend at Croft, which is mega.
“Not for one second did I think about not doing Croft – I want to be back out in the car and fighting where we left off because everything was looking very positive this season up until that point.
“I want to start where I left off and get out there fighting this weekend at one of my favourite circuits, so that’s great news.”
The 30-year-old explained how he is now facing a damage bill which exceeds that which he budgeted for at the start of the year.
“Last week, we got hit with some bad news about the crash damage. On Wednesday the team let me know the damage was worse than what we first expected, so realistically at the minute I’m looking at about £95,000 + VAT damage bill, which is just insane.
“To explain how it normally works: I bring a budget to the team – that’s a cost to me. On top of that, from our sponsorship packages there are a lot of costs built in, things like I do the track day, I do the dinner ball, I do the VIP passes that I have to pay for, and all those things add up.
“Then on top of that I budget a damage budget, which for this year I budgeted £40,000. If you speak to quite a lot of the drivers that’s a sensible amount.
“Up until this point this year I did pretty much next to nothing. Last year when I raced with Power Maxed, the damage was hardly anything.
“Last year and this year, up until this point, I’ve raced in 41 British Touring Car races and haven’t been involved in any incident whatsoever. Budgeting £40,000 – yes you’d like to budget more – but things are tight, so that’s what we did.
“You don’t expect to have a crash on this kind of level. We’ve heard of crashes before which might cost £25,000 or £30,000 if it’s a big one, but not to this extent, so it’s not something you really plan for.
“Insurance is an option, but you’d have to have a crash like this to make it worthwhile, which you don’t want to plan for.
“I’ve had a lot of support from the team and a lot of support from my current partners and we’ve figured out a cash flow strategy where the plan and goal is that we’re going to finish the season.
“I’ve been working the hardest I’ve ever worked in my life to get over this situation and make sure we carry on. Everything was looking so good and positive that you can’t give up – you’ve got to keep going.
“Last week I worked very hard on approaching new people and the people we’ve been speaking to for a while and get the deals over the line. We’ve had some success last week, which is great, but as you can imagine there’s a hell of a lot to do.
“£95,000 is a lot of money and realistically it might not be done in a couple of weeks, so I’m going to keep working hard at this for the remainder of the season and get that money together so I’m not in debt by the end of the year.
“I’ve come up with a few different ideas. Some people have mentioned about crowdfunding, which I don’t want to do. At the end of the day I’ve got no one to blame for the incident and it’s not as if I’m laying here with a broken back, so I’m fine and I don’t think that’s the right thing to do.
“I have thought about ideas of trying to put bundles together at a smaller package rate where people can maybe get involved and help but get something good back in return.
“I’m working on that at the moment but I don’t think it is going to be ready this week, but hopefully in the summer break I can release that.
“It’s a tough situation I’m in at the moment. Physically I’m fine but that’s the least of my worries at the moment. The stress and financial side is the toughest part at the moment but I’m doing everything I can and I’ll keep working hard to make sure I can continue where I left off.”
Watch Daniel Lloyd’s pre-Croft vlog