Stunning start for Lynch on BTRDA return

Tony Lynch enjoyed a stunning return to the BTRDA Rallycross Championship with a pair of top five finishes in the second and third rounds of the season at Pembrey.Having been forced to curtail his programme in the MSA British Rallycross Championship following a late regulation change that ruled his car ineligible, Westhoughton-based Tony and his Lucas Oil Team Geriatric outfit instead elected to take up the challenge of the BTRDA’s Supermodified class – running an upgraded version of the MINI Cooper he took to championship success in 2013.With the late change in programme having forced him to miss the season opener as work on the MINI was completed, Tony made the trip to the Welsh circuit unsure on what to expect, with his car down on power to his many of his rivals at the start of its development programme.That mattered little in the opening heat of Round Two, when damp conditions that levelled the playing field somewhat allowed Tony to go second quickest, and he added a further brace of top ten finishes in the remaining heats to put him straight into the A Final.A battling drive there saw Tony rewarded with a fine fifth place finish, leaving confidence high heading into Round Three the following day.Although unable to replicate the top three result from the earlier round, Tony brought the MINI home to the finish inside the top ten in two of the three heats, although a tough run in heat two when he was forced off track meant he had to settle for a place in the B Final.Staying out of trouble, Tony was able to cross the line in second place to earn a place in the A Final, where another strong drive was again rewarded with a fifth place finish.Just as impressively, Tony was second amongst the over two litre cars – as he had been the previous day.Despite missing the opening round, Tony sits sixth in the Supermodified Class standings before dropped scores are taken into account.“What a weekend,” Tony admitted afterwards. “We genuinely didn’t know what to expect from our first run in the Supermodified Class, and to come away from Pembrey with a pair of fifth place finishes is more than we could have hoped for.“However, the most exciting thing about the weekend isn’t our results; it’s more that we know there is so much we can do to make the car even better than it was. We can get more power from the engine for a start, can probably get the weight down a bit more and can also work on the handling, even though the new parts we had from AVO Shocks meant the handling was better than it’s ever been.“The boys worked so hard on the car during the winter and it was good to see all of their work rewarded. We’ll now look at the improvements we can make to the car so that when we head back to Pembrey for the next round in August, we can push for a stronger result and see the progress we are making.”