LUKE SPORT X MAXIMUM MOTORSPORT ROUNDS 13, 14 & 155th Jul
Lines started Race 1 towards the back of the grid and on the hard tyre option, he had his work cut out for him. Lines soon found himself in a four-way match with Alex Martin, Matt Simpson, and Chris Smiley, exchanging paintwork before the chequered flag fell with Lines crossing the line in 23rd. “The car was superb. It was great to be able to finally battle with people. Welch have done a superb job in getting this car to another level,” said Lines.
Starting in 23rd for Race 2, Lines wasn’t far away from a potential points finish. It didn’t take Lines long to get in another pack fight. Lines closed the gap rapidly, making a spectacular lunge up the inside into the final turn. At the end of Race 2, Lines appeared in 21st with some of his strongest racing this year. “What a car, what a race. The tyres made a massive difference to me in that race. The car felt great again; I just need to push that little bit harder now and push for a points finish,” said Lines.
With grey skies looming before Race 3, the Maximum teams fitted the wet tyre moments before taking to the grid – and were soon patting themselves on the back. As the cars went on the warm-up lap, it was clear that several cars had stayed on slicks but the rain now falling harder gave Lines the perfect opportunity to make up vital places. He launched off the grid with his best start of the weekend, but any progress was paused by the arrival of the safety car after just half a lap. When the safety car lights went out, the rain was falling even harder. Lines continued to make up place after place and was holding 17th for some time before the safety car was needed again.
The pack bunched up once more and Lines continued to push. However, he couldn’t hold off Martin Depper and Jeff Smith, falling to 19th. That still gave Lines his best finish in 2016 and completed the most constant weekend in Maximum Motorsport’s BTCC history. “The weather made things really hard, I’m sorry for the team that we couldn’t get any points this weekend as the car was superb. Welch have done a great job in getting the car to where it and I can’t wait to continue the rest of the season with them,” said Lines. Maximum Motorsport head to Snetterton for the championship’s two-day tyre test later this month before returning to the Norfolk circuit for rounds 16, 17 and 18 over the weekend of 30th and 31st July.