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Taylor takes second at Brands Hatch season finale

Posted onPosted on 9th Nov

Huthwaite-based Taylor’s Trucksport Racing Team encountered a challenging end to the British Truck Racing Championship season at Brands Hatch, reports Paul Horton.

The fireworks flew as the team battled through horrendous weather conditions and substantial damage to keep their race truck on track over the weekend.

All was not lost, however, as 35-year-old Mansfield racer Mark Taylor, behind the wheel of the Taylors Transport sponsored #81 MAN TGA 12000 racing truck, brought some silverware back home, taking a second to finish the season on a high with a top-five spot.

Two 30-minute free practice sessions on the Friday saw the first session halted by a red flag after 15 minutes due to a stranded truck on track. The truck performed great in both sessions on the 1.2079-mile tarmac.

Qualifying saw nine laps and the 15-minute session went well, the fastest lap on lap 6 with a time of 1:11.353secs. On lap 8 and at the end of Cooper Straight Taylor spun the 5.5 tonne beast on to the wet grass, eventually got back and finished with 10th and 11th places for races one and two.

The team worked and replaced a damaged radiator once the truck returned to the paddock.

Saturday’s first race of the weekend saw heavy rain begin to fall. Two red flags stopped racing and on the re-start of only eight minutes he was in P7 by the end of lap one. to take the chequered flag. He was fourth fastest in the race with a time of 1;10.954secs on the last lap.

The rain had stopped by race two, but the track was still wet, with a reduced race time. Mark started 11th on the grid. For the first five laps he was in P7 by lap 6. He got his fastest lap in on lap 3 and crossed the line seventh.

A reverse grid for race three saw Taylor line up second saw on the grid. Conditions only worsened and a delayed start due to torrential rain left Taylor waiting in the paddock for 30 minutes. And as the lights went out Taylor tip-toed around the circuit, as did all the others.

A multi-truck incident, which involved Taylor, Jenkins and several others on the run up to Druids, saw red flags were out again with just a couple of minutes left. The #81 sustained serious damage to the cab side and chassis after being hit by at least two others.

The race result positions were declared a lap before the incident, that saw Taylor take a second-place podium spot and very well deserved due the perilous conditions.

The Taylor’s Trucksport team spang into action to repair a sorry looking #81, that included a new windscreen, new body sections and repairs to the steering to name a few.

Race four saw Taylor’s second reverse grid and line up second on the grid. A great start saw Mark pull away from the pack behind and take advantage over Richard Collett.

On the first lap along Cooper Straight a steering fault occurred sending it straight over the grass and saw Mark retire.

Repairs were carried out to see Mark start the last race of the day and season from 7th on the grid that saw him take the flag in P18.

After the race Taylor said: “It had been a challenging weekend, it was good to get a trophy and take a second place in race three. The conditions were horrible out there, we got a lot of damage to the truck during the races, but the team did a great job keeping me a track.

“I would like to thank all that have been involved with us during the season, team, family, our sponsors and of course our supporters”

Taylor finished the British Truck Racing Championship in fifth place in the Division 1 Championship.