Championship leader Rob Smith says he is aiming for nothing less than a return to the top step of the Power Maxed MINI Challenge podium when the ultra-competitive category resumes this coming weekend, 13th/14th June, at Silverstone Grand Prix Circuit for rounds seven, eight and nine.
Carrying an eight point lead into the third race meeting of the 2015 campaign, the 23-year-old is also determined to remain at the head of the driver standings where he has been since taking the historic first ever win for the new MINI F56 car during round one at Donington Park in April.
Concluding the opening event of the year with two wins and an additional top three finish, the Telford driver took his tally of podiums for the season to five from six races last time out at Brands Hatch Grand Prix Circuit.
The visit to Silverstone’s full 3.66-mile GP track marks a return to the scene of Rob’s maiden MINI Challenge race victory, which he achieved last August during only his third ever outing in the popular one-make series, a result which paved the way for a full campaign in the category this year.
With good knowledge of, and a keen affinity with, the Northamptonshire venue, the Excelr8 Motorsport racer says victories are the sole target a few days from now as he seeks to replicate the level of performance displayed at Donington during the championship curtain-raiser.
“I want to get back on the top step of the podium and after the win at Silverstone last year, I want to aim for more of the same at the weekend”, said Rob, “Brands GP is one of my least favourite tracks, so to still come away from there last time out with a couple of podiums was good and helped keep the lead in the championship. Hopefully at Silverstone we can be back how we were at Donington.”
Thus far this season, the MINI F56 has proven to be a massively popular addition to the MotorSport Vision-run category and the racing, as well as the size of the grid, has been lauded by competitors and spectators in equal measure – not least by Rob who is a huge fan of the latest generation MINI.
“I’m really enjoying driving the new F56, it’s a great car and a big improvement on the previous car I raced last year”, added the BMTR, Grouptyre, Evergreen Tyres and B.A Bush-backed driver, “There are quite a few developments coming as the season moves on and all reports say the cars will be another step forward at Silverstone – I’m looking forward to that.”
Qualifying for the third race meeting of the MINI Challenge season will get underway at 10.45 on Saturday, 13th June, with round seven following at 15.15. On Sunday, 14th June, round eight is set to commence at 10.30 with round nine scheduled to start at 16.10.