Charlie looking to cap his year with another win at Donington Park
Thursday, 21 Sep 2017
    Charlie Butler-Henderson wants to cap another successful MINI CHALLENGE JCW campaign with a third race victory of the year at Donington Park this weekend, whi...
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A Battle of the elements for Charlie at Oulton Park
Friday, 25 Aug 2017
  Enduring two challenging races at Oulton Park, Charlie sets his sights on securing second place in this year’s Mini Challenge Festival. ...
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A Battle of the elements for Charlie at Oulton Park

Date: 25/08/2017

 

Enduring two challenging races at Oulton Park, Charlie sets his sights on securing second place in this year’s Mini Challenge Festival.


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This season has met Charlie with numerous mechanical failures, unfavourable weather conditions, and forced re-grids. Despite the first place title being plucked from Butler-Henderson’s grasp by this year’s confirmed reigning champion, Brett Smith, Charlie remains optimistic in his charge to secure second place in the season finale next month.

Setting the second-fastest time in qualifying, Oulton Park commenced in an encouraging fashion, procuring Charlie the pole position for the opening race. The advantageous position in which Charlie found himself set his supporters hopes high for another strong result; unfortunately, cause for celebration was a far cry away with the capricious summer storms looming over the tracks.

With the track saturated one minute and drying the next, Charlie made the difficult decision to opt for two wet-weather tyres and two dry ones. The first laps didn’t see the anticipated rainfall and a fast drying track on Charlie’s wet-weather tyres was problematic to say the least. Loosing grip Charlie fell back to third, and when Bladon then slid off the track at turn three things started to go sideways for Charlie.

Articulating his frustrations, Charlie detailed the event:

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When Max came back across in front of me I had nowhere to go so hit his rear bumper…From that moment the car just didn’t feel right’.

Unbeknown to Charlie the contact had severely damaged his car’s steering, hindering his ability to turn right – not the best news considering it was the penultimate winding track of the championship, right? Ending in the gravel when steering failed to comply completely, Charlie admitted his exasperations stating:

‘I was absolutely gutted about race one, I had the pace to win it.’

Deflated but not defeated, Charlie maintained his optimistic stature for the second race. Safe to say Charlie’s non-finish in race one made for on heck of a challenge, starting back in 19th on a track that is notoriously tough to overtake on.

Clearly thriving on this challenge, Charlie managed to climb seven places in the first opening laps before the race was neutralised to recover a car from the gravel. Leaving just a few laps of racing to go, Charlie flew across the track twice setting the race’s fastest lap in doing so Charlie managed to finish in ninth. 

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Now, a mere five points behind Reece Barr, Charlie is in a strong third place in the championship table. Classing Oulton Park as somewhat of a lottery, Charlie commented:

‘ It’s safe to say the weekend didn’t go to plan, but Oulton is a tricky track and when you throw in unpredictable weather it can be a lottery…Congratulations, to Brett, he’s had a great year. For me the target is now securing second in the championship, and to keep my run of top-three finishes in each of the last three seasons going. Bring on Donington Park!’ 

The season finale can be caught live on Front Runner Digital TV channel, Sky channel 468 and Freeview channel 91. 




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