BRITISH Touring Car Championship rookie Ollie Pidgley made another step forward in the UK’s premier motor racing category at a rain-swept Knockhill in Scotland, where the Volkswagen CC racer encountered another series of fresh challenges.

Making good progress through the dry free practice sessions on Saturday, where he had to pretty much learn the Fife circuit from scratch having only competed there once previously in a Formula 4 single-seater back in 2015, the Downton driver headed into raceday in confident mood.

Heavy and persistent rain on Sunday, though, delivered a fresh test for Pidgley who celebrated his 21st birthday over the weekend. With a highlight finish of 21st place in round 23, the Trade Price Cars with Team Brisky Racing driver hoped for more in round 24 later in the day, especially starting the race just outside the top 20, but unfortunate contact on lap two ended those aims.

“I’m not sure what happened entirely”, explained Pidgley after race three, “Matt Simpson went sideways at the hairpin and so, in avoidance, I went to the outside but Bobby [Thompson] out braked himself and made contact with my wheel, which was on full lock, so it broke the tow link.

“It’s quite frustrating it happened in that race as it was the highest I’ve started in touring cars, and other than [Jason] Plato in his rear-wheel drive getting past me, I managed to stay with the others on the first couple of laps and things were going well. It’s a shame, but there are lots of positives.”

Next up for Pidgley will be the penultimate race meeting of the season this weekend at Silverstone National Circuit in Northamptonshire.

“Silverstone is one of the tracks I’ve done most at before, in Clios and MINI Challenge, so I’m really looking forward to being there in a touring car”, commented Pidgley, “I’m confident it’ll be a good weekend and if it’s dry I think we have a great chance to make some more steps forward, plus it should be a good track for our Volkswagen.”