Double Brands Hatch Win For TCR's Robinson, Team review‏

Michelin Clio Cup Race Series championship leader Mike Robinson extended his lead at the top of the driver standings to 36 points at Brands Hatch Indy Circuit over the weekend, 26th/27th July, after taking two more superb wins for Total Control Racing.Beginning the event impressively by claiming pole position for rounds seven and eight of the season, the championship pace-setter’s fourth and fifth pole starts of 2014, Robinson didn’t put a wheel wrong in either contest at the 1.2-mile Kent track to take his tally of wins for the year to five.In round seven on Saturday afternoon, the TCR driver made a good start from the notoriously tricky pole position slot at Brands and held the lead throughout. After seeing off the attentions of the chasing pack, in particular Jeff Smith during the early going, Robinson was able to edge away.The complexion of the race changed at the start of lap 14 when Smith lost control of his Clio at the exit of Paddock Hill Bend, leading to a heavy impact with the barriers. Officials didn’t waste time in red flagging the race, so Robinson claimed the win by 1.8 seconds with the result taken back to the end of lap 12.On Sunday, the Surbiton-based driver again produced a Clio Cup masterclass in a much more closely contested affair. Making a very good start again from pole, Robinson was pressured during the early going but after a mid-race Safety Car period he started to pull clear. In the end, he took the flag on lap 21 just over a second ahead of chief championship rival David Dickenson.“Mike’s had another superb weekend, two poles and two wins is fantastic and just about as much as you can hope for”, said a very happy Lee Brookes, TCR team principal, “The main thing was to look after the championship lead but the two wins helped Mike to extend his advantage, so we’re really pleased about that and looking forward to Snetterton now.”Rapid team-mate Andy Jordan again experienced a weekend of some misfortune, although he did manage to move up into ninth position in the championship standings after posting ninth and eighth position results in the two races.Despite having the clear pace to score much more heavily, the Bridgnorth driver’s weekend got off to a luckless start with an excursion in qualifying. Beginning round seven from seventh position, Jordan maintained his place during the early laps and ran tight to the tail of Luke Herbert.Pressing hard to try and find a way past into the top six, an unfortunate moment on lap eight dropped the TCR racer to 11th position but he was able to fight back into ninth before the red flags were shown. In terms of pace, Jordan’s best lap was a mere 0.1 seconds shy of Robinson’s.Starting round eight from an uncharacteristic 12th on the grid, Jordan put together a superb opening lap and rocketed into seventh place. After the mid-race Safety Car hopes were high of breaking into the top six but a frustrating five second time penalty for a track limits indiscretion meant he slipped to eighth in the final classification.“We’re really gutted for Andy, he had the pace this weekend to be on the podium for sure but qualifying didn’t go as planned and that set the scene for the races”, said team boss Brookes, “He’s had far more than his share of bad luck this season, the kid deserves much more so hopefully he can be back on the podium when we go to Snetterton.”Norfolk’s Snetterton 300 Circuit will host rounds nine and 10 of the Michelin Clio Cup Race Series on 30th/31st August. Before then, TCR will be in action at the East Anglian track with its Ginetta Junior Championship squad this coming weekend, 2nd/3rd August, for rounds 11 and 12 of its season. Provisional 2014 Michelin Clio Cup Race Series Driver Standings (after Rd8):1st Mike Robinson, 218pts; 9th Andy Jordan, 91pts