Tech Speed chase more podium success at Brands

On the back of its best weekend of the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship season last time out at Rockingham, the with Tech-Speed Motorsport team will hope to challenge for at least a fourth podium finish of the year when the series returns to Brands Hatch this weekend for the penultimate round of the 2011 campaign.Widnes-racer Paul O’Neill took his third podium finish of the year at Rockingham and also claimed a first Independents’ victory at the wheel of his Chevrolet Cruze to move back into the top ten in the championship standings.Paul secured two top six finishes on the famous Grand Prix layout last year at the wheel of his older-spec Honda Integra and has already visited the Brands Hatch podium this season, having finished third in the final race of the season opener back in March on what was his first weekend at the wheel of the Chevrolet.After producing his most competitive showing of the season at Rockingham at fortnight ago, Paul heads to Brands Hatch in confident mood with at least a podium finish being the aim to help cement his position in both the overall and Independents’ championship standings. “I’m quite excited going into the weekend,” he said. “We know that the Cruze is a strong package on the Indy circuit and I think the car will also be strong around the GP loop, even though there are some long straights where we might lose some of the advantage we have over the turbos through the corners. I love the GP circuit and the car went well there last year with Jason [Plato], so we’ve got to be confident about our chances and I think we’re going there better prepared than we were at Rockingham, which was our best weekend of the season.“At Rockingham, we showed we can race at the front and we were able to match RML and Jason for pace, so I have to go into this weekend thinking that I can challenge for a win. It’s always in the back of your mind that the turbos are going to be strong, but I just have to give as good as I get and do the best job possible for the team. “It’s vital to qualify well as we did at Rockingham and I’ll be putting more focus on qualifying to make sure we start from inside the top six as it’ll only help our chances of repeating the form we showed last time out. At the very least, I’ve got to aim to come away from Brands Hatch with another podium finish.”Guernsey-based team-mate John George picked up three solid finishes on the shorter Indy circuit at the start of the season and makes a return to Brands Hatch having taken a best finish of eleventh so far this year.With a hat-trick of finishes at Rockingham last time out bringing to an end a challenging set of results since the resumption of racing after the summer break, John heads into the weekend looking to bring home three finishes in the top half of what is expected to be a bumper grid of 29 cars.“On paper, this should be a good weekend for us,” he said. “The Grand Prix circuit is one that I really like and hopefully we’ll be able to produce the kind of performances we enjoyed at Snetterton and Rockingham, where we were able to really challenge the turbo cars.“I’ve had some bad luck in recent meetings so I’d be happy this weekend if I could qualify well and then bring the car home inside the top 15 in each of the three races. That’s my aim, and if I can better that and break into the points then it will be a bonus.”