Hart joint leader of TCR UK series following strong start
Max Hart and Lewis Kent took a win apiece at the opening round of the TCR UK championship at the Silverstone International circuit, with the rival Hyundai Motorsport drivers leaving with the joint-lead of the standings.
Hart took a shock last-minute pole in the 15-minute qualifying session on Sunday morning, depriving the two Kent brothers Bradley and Lewis, with Bradley outqualifying his more experienced brother on his championship debut. At the start of the first race, Hart led away from pole, while Lewis Kent was quickly up to second ahead of his brother Bradley, who skated off the track at the Village corner and out of the race. The race was held behind the safety car after one of the Volkswagen Cup cars had stopped on the grid, but the race was restarted on lap three. Hart pulled out a brief gap before Kent starting to rein him in, leading to Hart altering his driving approach to preserve the tyres, and also set the fastest lap in the process. Hart won the race after 22 laps, with Kent crossing the line in second, two seconds adrift, with Dan Kirby the third classified driver in the TCR category in his Power Maxed Car Care Racing-run CUPRA.
The top six were reversed for Race 2, with William Butler starting from pole in his CUPRA, but Kirby launched off the line from third on the grid and swept into the lead, while Lewis Kent also made swift progress from fifth, and was up to second by the end of the first lap. Kent’s Race 1 rival Hart followed him through the field and was also on his tail by the end of the opening lap.
Kent made his move for the lead on lap four, passing Kirby’s CUPRA at Village, with Hart repeating the manoeuvre on Kirby one lap later. From thereon, the race remained stable, with Kent leading Hart by about two seconds throughout the rest of the race to the finish, with Kirby a safe distance behind.
With Kent and Hart sharing the same results of first and second in both races, and also with each scoring a fastest lap point, the two drivers now are in joint-lead of the drivers’ standings.
The next round of TCR UK takes place at the Castle Combe circuit on May 31st.
1. Max Hart (Maximum Motorsport, Hyundai i30 N), 22 laps
2. Lewis Kent (Essex & Kent Motorsport, Hyundai i30 N), 2.045
3. Dan Kirby (Power Maxed Car Care Racing, CUPRA), 26.707
4. Hugo Cook (Simpson Motorsport, Audi RS 3 LMS), 28.660
5. William Butler (Power Maxed Car Care Racing, CUPRA), 30.268
1. Lewis Kent (Essex & Kent Motorsport, Hyundai i30 N), 22 laps
2. Max Hart (Maximum Motorsport, Hyundai i30 N), 1.552
3. Dan Kirby (Power Maxed Car Care Racing, CUPRA), 21.297
4. Bradley Kent (Essex & Kent Motorsport, Hyundai i30 N), 22.774
5. Hugo Cook (Simpson Motorsport, Audi RS 3 LMS), 27.798
1. M. Hart &. L. Kent 48 pts; 3. D. Kirby 38
For more information about Max Hart, his 2021 racing programme and sponsorship opportunities, please visit maxhartracing.com and his social media channels. Max's season is supported by Selco Hygiene, Adapt Paper Products, Dunshaughlin Motors and Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing.