Lydia WalmsleyThe latest BTCC meeting at Croft saw Lydia and the rest of the Mini challenge Cooper class join as a support race. Lydia went well at the circuit when they visited in 2019 so she was very hopeful for a good weekend.

Qualifying came to an early halt when another drivers off caused a red flag before Lydia had time to even set a lap time. When it restarted, Lydia found her ABS braking was having issues. Croft has several corners which need late and hard braking so to not have ABS when everyone else has is a big disadvantage.

Unsurprisingly, Lydia dropped to fourteenth on the grid and things looked bad. Fortunately Lydia started to gradually learn how to drive around the problem and pulled out a great lap to move up to sixth. Incredibly she then improved again to put herself fifth. This would be a good result normally but it was a great achievement in a car with faulty brakes. Rain then started to fall which meant improvements from anyone were impossible.

The first race of the weekend would be later that day with the second live on ITV4 on Sunday. As the lights went out that Saturday afternoon, all twenty nine cars got away safely. As the cars headed towards the end of the lap there was some jostling for position in Sunny In and Out but Lydia kept her fifth place. By lap four, she made a move to take fourth place at the hairpin. She then pulled away from fifth and made another great pass up the inside of turn one to take third.

The leading pack were now very close. Lydia tried for a move around the outside on second place but had to pull back to third when it didn’t quite work. She was still on their tail with five minutes to go with the rest of the pack right behind her. Fourth place then made a tough move up the inside pushing Lydia wide on the exit of tower dropping her to fifth as she ended up on the grass. Second place then crashed out in the closing stages leaving Lydia to take the flag in fourth after an exciting race.

Lydia WalmsleyThe second race is a reverse grid and with tenth place drawn for pole, it put Lydia in seventh. Not ideal but she should be able to fight her way up again.

She got a great start and moved into sixth on lap 1, narrowly avoiding an out of control car. There was also an accident further down the field meaning the safety car came out. This was less than ideal for Lydia as she wanted the maximum racing laps to move up the field.

The safety car lasted for a couple of laps before the lights went out and they were off again with ten minutes of the race left. Lydia closed on fifth but before she could make a move, there was another big crash behind her which brought the safety car back out.

Unfortunately, the clean up for the second incident took so long that the chequered flag came out with no further racing complete leaving Lydia in sixth place. It was some more points but Lydia was frustrated not to be able to fight up the field.

“The race yesterday was great and I narrowly missed out on a podium but today was a little frustrating with no chance for me to fight up the field.

We leave Croft third in the championship with one round to go - it's tight at the top so we can still do this. Thanks to all my sponsors including Morris Lubricants, Whip Street Motors, IronGlaze, Derek Hales Ltd, M R Walker & Sons, Rourke Holdings, Print4U, Places Leisure, A&D Motors, Ropelet and Rennat Design. I can’t wait for the finale at Donington Park in early November.”

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