Brief bites from Brands Hatch
BTCC News | Mon 23rd August 2004- British DTM star Gary Paffett was at Brands Hatch with the VX Racing team. Paffett is a graduate of Martin Hines’ Zip Kart category, and was on the grid with Luke Hines ahead of race three. He is currently third in the standings in the DTM, 11 points behind leader Mattias Ekstrom and has recently been linked with a move to F1 with Sauber.
- Michael Bentwood was given a one-second penalty at the end of race one, dropping him to 11th behind Colin Turkington. It also meant that Turkington started race two from pole position, whilst Bentwood had to make his way up from 11th. The VX Racing Junior driver also had his license endorsed with three points for the last lap clash with Turkington.
- ‘Stars’ of the music world were on hand at Brands Hatch yesterday. Young group ‘VS’ were guests of Tom Chilton, whilst Chesney Hawkes (yes, the one and only!) was also lurking on the grid.
- Jason Plato and Matt Neal both celebrated landmarks in their BTCC careers at Brands Hatch. For Plato, race three was his 150th race whilst the second race of the day was number 250 for Neal. Vicki Butler-Henderson presented Plato with a Seat Toledo shaped cake ahead of the big race – for which Plato’s car sported ‘Plato 150 Not Out’ on its sunstrip.
- Stefan Hodgetts was officially reprimanded for the start/finish straight clash with Shaun Watson-Smith in race one. Jason Plato was reprimanded following his safety car tactics in the second race of the day, before being fined £500 and having his license endorsed with three points after race three.
- There was a minor post-race confrontation between Rob Collard and James Thompson at the end of the day. The two made contact in the closing stages of race three. Collard said: “There was a little bit of argy bargy after the race. We touched and he went on the grass. It’s just one of those things really. He’s got the hump about it, but that’s touring car racing.”