First season podium for Ovenden
First season podium for Ovenden

Canterbury based Rallycross driver Tristan Ovenden secured a podium at the British Rallycross Championship which was held at Pembrey Circuit in Carmarthenshire, Wales on Sunday.

The Goody Demolition backed driver headed into the weekend looking to put the bad luck of the previous 2 rounds behind him. Just as in previous rounds Ovenden drove near perfect qualifying rounds notching up wins in Q1 and Q3 he was only denied the top spot in Q2 by the narrowest of margins. This hard work secured him a pole position start for the semi-finals.

He made easy work with a lights to flag show of driving skills and headed out Semi-Final 1 by nearly an amazing 25 seconds!

Ovenden lined up for the final in a much deserved pole position and made a faultless start heading the bunch into the first corner. However, disaster struck as an uncharacteristic lapse in concentration lead to him spinning on the exit of the loose section and placing him in stone dead last place at the end of the first lap.

After some tenacious driving and in the process setting the 2 fastest laps of the final he was right back up into second place and challenging for the lead.

The final corner saw him pull out level for a straight drag race to the flag. The finish was so close that to spectators the winner wasn’t apparent.

The official timing of the race later confirmed that Ovenden had in fact missed out on the win by less than 100th of a second! Possibly the closest finish in a British final for some years.

This gutsy and entertaining display rewarded him by moving him from 6th place in the championship to joint second. And at this early stage in the campaign leaves absolutely everything to drive for.

Having had a decent weekend, Ovenden was pleased with how things had gone:

“I’m not sure what happened, I’d been really careful through that part of the track all day and I didn’t think I did anything particularly different, but it got away from me that time, so we’ll have to put that one down to driver error.”

“So that small mistake on the first lap ultimately cost us the win, but it made for a great race and it was good fun catching up and almost stole it at the line! The team worked really hard all day to keep the car in trim and it’s good to get some decent points on the board.”

The championship now moves on to a double header for rounds 4 and 5 and visits Mondello Park in Ireland for the first time since 2015. Racing starts on 22nd July starting at 9:00am. And also on Sunday 23rd for round 5.