Sep 06, 2019
The MV Commercial BTRA Championship is set to enter the home straight of what has been a captivating 2019 campaign at Snetterton this weekend (September 7/8), with it all still to play for in both the Division 1 and 2 title battles.
Entering the business end of the season with just three events remaining – including this weekend’s in East Anglia – the fight to reign supreme amongst Britain’s heavyweight behemoth machines looks likely to intensify as every point now becomes crucial.
Coming off the back of a pulsating Convoy in the Park meeting at Donington Park last month, reigning champions Ryan Smith and Luke Garrett find themselves in the pound seats as it stands but are facing stiff competition.
Breaking the peace and tranquility of the Norfolk countryside, a total of eights race – four for each class – are scheduled to take place around the 2.99-mile circuit and there is likely to be action around every turn.
Defending champion holds Division 1 initiative
Division 1 has taken on a familiar feel to things in 2019 with three-time reigning champion Ryan Smith leading the way – and looking in formidable form too.
Since the season-opener at Brands Hatch both Smith and Jenkins have been the leading lights of the premier class, winning a majority of the races already run. Separated by just 27-points as it stands, the title tussle at the front of the grid is set to only continue.
Smith and Jenkins won’t be the only ones to keep a keen eye on however as several other drivers will be keen to stand on the top step of the podium before the curtain falls on the season.
Clinching a host of breakthrough podiums this year, Mark Taylor has continued to make significant strides forward and is good value for his third place in the overall standings currently.
Hot on his heels however, just four points behind, is former Division 2 title winner John Newell. Also chasing his first win of the season, Newell has been in the thick of the action throughout the year and could well break his duck.
Series stalwart Richard Collett endured a frustrating start to the year but has since bounced back in style, notching several podium finishes along the way. A favourite amongst the fans, Collett has continued to churn out the results and will likely be in front-running contention.
Another driver that will be worth taking note of is Simon Reid, who scored a sensational victory at Donington Park last time out despite coming under intense pressure. Having missed a handful of events, the Iveco driver is playing catch up but has more than proved he is capable of running up at the front.
Having debuted at the Nurburgring in July, Tom O’Rourke will continue his BTRA education as he sets his sights on taking another step closer to the front-runners and claim what will be his first-ever rostrum finish.
Chase is on to catch Garrett
The battle for supremacy in Division 2 is set to reach fever pitch at Snetterton as a host of drivers continue their bid to try and dethrone reigning champion Luke Garrett.
Picking up where he left off last year, Garrett has been peerless at times to position himself at the summit of the points standings. Pairing his rapid speed with consistency, the MAN driver has been at the forefront of the action, winning countless races and ultimately building up a 51-point lead.
With the unpredictable usually happening when it comes to truck racing, Garrett can’t rest on his laurels and he’ll need to be on top of his game if he is to remain at the sharp end.
Leading the chase to catch the MAN ace is Steven Powell, another driver that has rarely been seen off the podium this year. Picking up silverware on a regular basis, Powell will need to ensure he begins to take points off Garrett if he is to stand a chance of being crowned champion in November.
Brad Smith has quietly gone about his business so far this season to position himself in third whilst John Bowler has enjoyed a stellar few events, including a maiden win at the Nurburgring, to sit fourth.
Renault UK Clio Cup convert Paul Rivett has made waves in his first full season in the championship and with a handful of wins to his name already, shouldn’t be discounted from making an impact on the title either.
Throw into the mix the likes of Erik Forsstrom, Adam Bint, John Powell and Simon Cole into the front-running mix and you begin to how ultra-competitive the Division 2 ranks are, and how it is no mean feat to win within it.
In addition to the aforementioned; Trevor Martin, Graham Powell and Jim Bennett have been all making improvements at almost every turn and more are expected to be on the way.
Producing a unique challenge like no other on the calendar, the annual visit to Snetterton this weekend is set to be pivotal in deciding the outcome of the 2019 MV Commercial Championship – and it is not to be missed.
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