Civic Cup 2014 – Round 1 Donington Park

The long wait was over and Civic Cup 2014 descended on Donington Park for the first rounds of the season. There was a packed grid of 20 cars ready to take to the track with great interest as many regulation changes had been made and atleast 6 new or heaviliy re-freshed cars lining up. This was the first time Civic Cup would be televised and everyone was out to make a mark.

As Always we’d just like to say Thank You at the start to our Sponsors Brentacre who provide insurance for Modified vehicles. Follow the link here for a quote: http://www.brentacre.co.uk/AreaMotorsport and SuperPro Suspension Bushes for there Support.

Our selves at Area Motorsport hadn’t really done much to the car since our victorys at Rockingham late last year aside from a wheel refresh, some paint and some new sponsors on board in SuperPro and Brentacre Car Insurance.

We had completed some testing the Sunday before Donington and the car felt great although we didn’t really have much of a benchmark to know if our times were quick as only a few Civic Cup cars were in attendance on the day.

With scrutineering of the car completed and thankfully passed  we headed back to the awning for a final check over and torque check and it was time to go.

Although the Civic Cup grid was populated well, the organisers had put us in to qualify with the MX5 grid (25 of them) and with lower speeds throughout the circuit qualifying was going to be tough. Qualifying as predicted was extremely difficult with not one clear lap however fortunately for us everyone else would be having the same problem. As the 4th lap was completed, to see P1 on the pitboard with 8 tenth gap to the next placed Civic was a relief. With the control tyre being Toyo 888’s we knew we had to get the quick laps in early as they go off extremely quickly yielding lap times nearly a second slower just a couple of laps after the fastest. At this point with the advantage in our hands we decided to pit for a pressure check and change to see if any improvements could be made. With only 5 minutes of the session left although the changes felt good lap times were slower which certainly gave us something to aim for in Race Trim. Now it was just waiting to come over the start finish and see where we placed on the pitboard, P1was displayed which was a bit of a shock due to the traffic we encountered however we were certainly pleased with the results, just proving the meticulous attention to detail we pay with all aspects of our setup really paid off.

With a quick weight check by the scrutineers and a check of the ECU seals and we were back to the awning to prepare for Race 1.

To try and improve the longevity of the tyres and balance the grip levels we made some geometry and pressure changes to aid this, As soon as this was completed it was time to reset the data logger and Cameras and head out for Race 1. The grid saw us lining up next to the EP3 of Tegiwa Imports with fast starting EK’s occupying the 2nd row of the grid. After the green flag lap we sat waiting for what seemed like an age for the rest of the grid to form before the red lights came on and quickly went out. With a terrible start we quickly dropped back down to 4th but after the first corner managed to emerge in 2nd.

Sadly our camera wasn’t set to record what was one of the best races Civic Cup has seen. Rich Hockley, 2012 and 2013 Season Champion managed to pass the EP3 of Tegiwa Imports a few corners after ourselves and rapidly started putting pressure on us, what emerged from this was a 12 lap battle between ourselves and the RACE DNA prepared EK of Hockley swapping places over 15 times for the lead, before fortunately for us and unfortunately for the EK he slipped and ran wide on some oil at Old Hairpin giving us a 2 second gap to bring the car home to the finish line.

Results for Race 1
AreaMotorsportDoningtonCivicCupResults
Race 1 Images Coutesy of Mark Calff Photography – More can be found here:

After Race 1 we spent 3 – 4 hours on the car re aligning and prepping the car for Race 2 on the Sunday, everything from a system check to a re-bleed of the brakes was completed to ensure the car was at the best it could be for the 2nd race.

The Morning went extremely quickly upto our 10:45 slot for Race 2. We did our usual run up 20 minutes before just to ensure everything was upto temperature then the car was quickly lined up on the grid ready to go all over again. Another terrible start dropped us quickly back to 3rd meaning we’d again have to try and gain places quickly to be in with any chance of repeating the previous days successes. After quickly gaining second place we were able to put pressure on the EP3 of Tegiwa Imports and at the start of Lap 2 make a move down the inside into the first corner. Hard on the brakes this move stuck and looking back 2nd and 3rd were immediately battling giving ourselves a chance to pull away. We managed to not only maintain the gap but increase upto the finish line rounding off a perfect weekend which couldn’t of gone any better.

Onto Brands Hatch for Round 2 of the Civic Cup.

Race 2 TV Footage – Civic Cup 2014 – Race 2 TV Coverage
Race 2 Civic Cup Onboard – Area Motorsport Civic Cup 2014 Onboard Race 2 Donington

Race 2 Images:


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