Nurburgring Race Meeting

The latest round of the Caterham R300 Championship saw the BaTSport team head out on an international adventure. With the action taking place at the hugely renowned Nurburgring Grand Prix circuit during the weekend of 28th-29th July there was just enough time to fit a BaT double header track & test day in beforehand.

In preparation for the action the team invaded Germany on Wednesday 25th July, ready for day one of some high octane fun on Thursday. You will have seen the news in recent weeks that BaTSport now have Paul O’Neill amongst the ranks for the remainder of the season. David McGilvray, now a BaTSport regular, returned to the Caterham cockpit for his third spirited outing. Kurt Hoffmann also made a return to competitive action after his debut with BaTSport back in May, with a triple attack from the BaTSport camp.

In a bid to familiarise themselves with the track-car combination Paul and David spent Thursday and Friday preparing themselves for the impending races. Kurt joined the team on Friday, as he renewed his skill behind the wheel of the R300.

After two glorious days in the German sunshine, the heavens opened spectacularly in time for race day. The mass down pours and thunder storms from during the night carried the rain into Saturday, as the team discussed set-up options.

The conditions made the decision almost impossible, and with the bone dry track surface becoming the base for standing water within minutes the unpredictability carried on towards qualifying. Compromised on set-up Paul qualified 13th for race one, with Kurt 18th and David 21st. Still unsure of whether the conditions would change the team readied themselves for race one.

Initially delayed due to yet more standing water, race one finally got underway; it even looked as though there would be a dry track by the time the chequered flag descended. Regardless of the tricky conditions all three BaTSport stars brought their cars home in one piece, and what a finish it was. In Paul’s BatSport debut he gave the team their first top ten finish with ninth place, whilst Kurt and David hustled their way to 18th and 21st, respectively.

A sunny day on Sunday saw Paul, Kurt and David take to the track in completely different conditions. Another eventful quest saw Paul storm his way up as high as fourth place courtesy of a series of very competitive lap times, much to the delight of the whole team. However, as he made his way onto the final tour the first corner suddenly absorbed him, with light damage causing an end to his race. Kurt too encountered drama on his last lap, with a wide run causing a drop of several places. Meanwhile, David battled to a strong 16th place, despite wrestling a “twitchy” set-up after a run across kerbs on lap 1 caused some rear suspension damage.

The next round takes place around the Snetterton 200 circuit on 1st-2nd September. Let’s see how the BaTSport guys fair back on home turf.

In Pictures

Kurt gets ready for a (very) wet qualifying session on new tyres. David looks sheepish about something and our mechanic Harry tries to get all arty with a great shot of Paul O'Neill getting ready for race 2.

Click thumbnail to view image.

Leanne Fahy
BaT Team
29 July 2012

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