Summer Sunshine Welcomes Civic Cup to Oulton Park

The Milltek Civic Cup returns for the third round of their packed 2021 calendar with Alistair Camp going into the Tunerfest North holding a seven-point lead thanks to his victory in the final race of the Brands Hatch Indy triple-header.

As the summer heats up, as does the championship race, with three drivers picking up victories in the four races we have had so far. Just 14 separate the top five as each driver looks to stamp their authority on this year’s competition. Consistency will be key as Oulton Park’s tight and twisty layout provides a golden opportunity for the strong qualifiers to take the initiative on an intense Saturday of action.

New to the series for 2021, Matt Luff has quickly made an impact on proceedings, taking a double pole position at Brands Hatch and will be eager to close the 12-point gap to Camp after a retirement in the final Brands Hatch race saw him lose the championship lead. The double karting champion will not be alone in his fight with Camp though as their Area Motorsport compatriot Jamie Tonks looks to secure his first race victory of the year, having picked up a podium in all but one of the races this season.

Last year Oulton Park welcomed the Milltek Civic Cup for their first round of a new campaign and as the series enters its new era under Club Time Attack, is eager to make the same impact after a year away from the fabled Cheshire hunting ground. Eventual champion Bruce Winfield would take one of the two race wins around here, paving the way for Morgan Bailey to follow him up in race two.

Bailey returns to this year’s competition with a newly build Civic EP3 to boot and will be eager to kick-start his championship champaign. The MJB Motorsport driver had started fifth for that second race during a weekend plagued with rain and with the series missing out the Shell Oil Hairpin, and thus one less grid spot, grid position will be more important than ever.

All eyes will be on Camp’s rivals this weekend, and many won’t just be from his own team. Kinetic Motorsport will be eager to kick off the campaign with a win as David Buky continues his title battle. Sitting second in the standings, Buky has not finished lower than fifth this season and has proven to be the master of consistency. Joining him will be the red rocket #47 driven by Simon Waite, as well as Ross Darlington, who showed flashes of pace at Brands, as well as Robert Butler.

Claiming pole position at the opening round had been Dan Thackeray. The 32-rear-old Tegiwa Trophy champion came into the season as one of the most anticipated talents and leading the MJ Motorsport squad will be another to watch after an unfortunate race took him out of contention at Cadwell Park. He’ll be up against the odds though, with Paul McHugh, Martin Dalzell and teenage sensation George Alp-Williams completing a six-man Area Motorsport squad.

The Civic Cup is nothing without its independent drivers though as a number of competitors are looking to secure their own success with family-run operations. At 22-years-old, Bradley Lane and Ben Mills represent two of the series next generation of talent with Mills uniquely being the only driver to run an FN2 model. Phillip Wright meanwhile has already tasted podium success this year and will be looking to repeat it again around another quick-yet-narrow circuit.

New on the scene for this weekend will be Mintro Motorsport’s Max Lewis and Rob Phillips with the support of North West Air Conditioning. Lewis, driving the #71 is an experienced Civic Cup racer, last making an appearance in 2019 when he raced here at Oulton Park. Phillips meanwhile will be fresh-faced heading into the weekend.

Rounding out the bumper grid of 19 Cup Class drivers will be Ryan Bensley, driving for Concept Motorsport and 33-year-old Chris Mullen driving the 2004 Civic EP3.

In the Production Class, all eyes are on Alfie Threlfall. At just 21 years old, Threlfall has taken the championship by storm, winning all three races at Brands Hatch and claiming pole in half of the rounds so far. An avid racer, he’ll be joined by his older brother Harry, who himself has tasted the champaign twice this year thanks to a third and second place.

Their biggest rival to the Class Championship is Mervyn Beckett. The #32 drives the distinctive Yellow Civic EP3, which, at 20-years-old makes it the oldest chassis on the grid, with even driver Matt Luff being younger than his car. Despite this, just 11 points separate him and Alfie at the top of the standings though.

Mark Hughes has been another to find himself on the Class podium this year and could yet have an outside chance of victory this weekend. However, he finds himself in an intense battle for fourth in the standings with just 5 points between himself Simon Welch, Rhys Lewis and Matthew Stenning, all of which return to action.

The first Practice session of the day takes place at 08:30am on Saturday 17th July, with Qualifying and the two races being streamed live on the Series YouTube and Facebook pages. Qaulifying will get underway at 10:10, with the afternoon of racing setting off at 12:35pm and 15:10pm. Keep up to date with the Civic Cup social media for further information.

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