Thruxton Circuit will see an abundance of high-octane tin-top thrills this coming weekend (19/20 September) as the Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship speeds into Hampshire for Rounds 13, 14 & 15 of a condensed 2020 season. Unfortunately, this event is being run behind closed doors. With no spectators.
Billed as not only the fastest circuit on the calendar but the country as well, the championship’s annual visit to Hampshire is renowned for producing blockbuster wheel-to-wheel battles, with speeds reaching an eye-watering 160mph at the fastest section of the track.
Unfortunately, due to the BTCC being classified as an elite sport by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS), this year will see the event sadly run behind closed doors and without spectators.
Whilst the spectator bankings will be regrettably empty, the on-track action is set to be as entertaining as ever for Britain’s premier motorsport series - as it has been at all four events so far this year.
Arriving at the home of the British Automobile Racing Club, reigning champion Colin Turkington sits on top of the standings holding a ten-point advantage. The Team BMW driver has been in sensational form this year with two wins and a host of podiums being the highlight.
Chasing a record-breaking fifth title, the Northern Irishman can’t rest for a second however as he has 2017 champion Ashley Sutton breathing down his neck. The Laser Tools Racing driver has chalked up four wins this year and his relentless driving style has made him one to watch.
As the BTCC reaches the mid-point in this unprecedented year, the two rear-wheel-drive competitors look likely to continue their ding-dong battle right the way through to the series finale at Brands Hatch in November.
Behind, Rory Butcher leads the chase for the top two in third place after scoring his second win of the season whilst Tom Oliphant and Tom Ingram have both enjoyed plenty of success too, placing them fourth and fifth in the standings.
Down the years the Honda Civic Type R has proven to be a potent weapon around the sweeping 2.36-mile layout and Halfords Yuasa Racing’s Dan Cammish will be looking to use that to reignite his championship challenge after tallying a brace of wins early on.
Matt Neal, Tom Chilton, local star Josh Cook and Jake Hill will also be worth keeping an eye on as they aim to make their mark in their own Honda machines as well.
Other notable names to look out for over the course of the weekend include Hyundai duo Senna Proctor and Chris Smiley, Oulton Park race-winner Adam Morgan, Mike Bushell and Jack Goff - to name but a few.
Thruxton will also play host to a pair of popular returns in Tom Onslow-Cole and Rob Austin. Replacing Ollie Brown at Team HARD for the next three events, Onslow-Cole will reunite with the Volkswagen CC to compete in the series for the first time since 2013.
Elsewhere, a late call-up for Austin will see the three-time race winner jump behind the wheel of the Power Maxed Car Care Racing Vauxhall Astra for his first outing since the 2018 season finale.
Every point is proving crucial in the fight for the biggest prize in UK motorsport and Thruxton always has a habit of throwing up the unexpected - making it unmissable viewing.
It won’t just be the BTCC that takes centre stage this weekend either, with support race action from the Michelin Ginetta Junior Championship, Millers Oils Ginetta GT4 Supercup, MINI CHALLENGE Cooper Class, Porsche Carrera Cup GB and F4 British Championship certified by FIA - powered by Ford EcoBoost also on the billing.
All of Sunday’s action will be broadcast live on ITV2, with coverage beginning at 11:10. To view the BTCC Digital Programme for this weekend, click here.