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Resilience rewards Taylor-Smith with Independents hat-trick at Thruxton

Aron Taylor Smith
11th Jun 2024 / by Andrea Seed

Aron Taylor-Smith’s resilience paid off in the Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) at Thruxton last weekend (8-9 June), where he bounced back from a high-speed crash in qualifying to secure a hat-trick of Independent race wins.

Thruxton, known as the fastest circuit in the UK, has been favourable for the Dubliner in previous years. Taylor-Smith arrived eager to extend his lead in the Independent standings and demonstrate the race-winning potential of his Evans Halshaw Power Maxed Racing Vauxhall Astra.

The weekend started promisingly with two top-four finishes in practice. However, during the crucial qualifying session on Saturday afternoon, a high-speed crash at Goodwood caused significant damage to his car. Despite the setback, a remarkable effort from his team allowed Taylor-Smith to rejoin the session just in time, securing a P12 starting position.

In race trim, Taylor-Smith’s experience and determination shone through. Thruxton’s action-packed racing provided opportunities, and he capitalised on the chaos to finish tenth in the first race, securing his sixth Independent win of the season. He repeated the success in race two, finishing ninth overall and clinching another Independent victory. These performances earned him a spot in the reverse-grid draw for the final race.

Starting ninth in the last race, Taylor-Smith battled with some of the championship’s top drivers to finish eighth, securing his third Independent win of the weekend. These results extended his lead over teammate Mikey Doble in the Independent standings to 10 points, with Evans Halshaw Power Maxed Racing also increasing their lead in the Independent Teams’ standings.

Reflecting on the weekend, Taylor-Smith expressed immense pride in both his team and himself for their resilience. “Leaving Thruxton, my overriding feeling is immense pride. Bouncing back from a huge crash in qualifying to achieve three top-ten finishes and Independent wins on Sunday is a testament to our hard work and determination,” he said.

Looking ahead to the next rounds at Oulton Park on 22-23 June, Taylor-Smith is optimistic. “Oulton is a track I love and where I’ve won in the past. On paper, all the ingredients are there for another positive weekend,” he added.

With his consistent performances, Taylor-Smith is establishing himself as a formidable force in the BTCC, and his fans will be eagerly watching to see if he can continue his winning streak at Oulton Park.

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