More silverware for Taylors Trucksport on successful weekend in Slovakia

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It was a stunningly successful weekend for Huthwaite’s Taylors Trucksport Racing team in the Goodyear FIA European Truck Racing Championship in Slovakia, taking two more podium spots, writes Paul Horton.

Driver Mark Taylor had a sterling weekend with outstanding performances throughout, taking a second and third place on the final day and holding on to third place in the Chrome Championship.

“What a weekend,” said Taylor. “Saturday went okay, we missed out narrowly on two podiums.

“But tyre wear was a problem in the blistering heat.

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Leader of the pack - Taylor in race four. Picture by Richard Kienberger PhotographyLeader of the pack - Taylor in race four. Picture by Richard Kienberger Photography
Leader of the pack - Taylor in race four. Picture by Richard Kienberger Photography

“Sunday’s two races went really well, two podiums a P2 and in the last race I was on course for a top spot on the podium but after some damage took a third.”Taylor achieved P6 and P11 in the practice sessions, topping speeds of over 128kph.A warm-up session on Saturday saw Taylor finish ninth and in Qualifying he took P11.The truck was running well, but already the red-hot temperatures on circuit were taking their toll on the tyres.Race one saw Taylor line up on the sixth row.

Contact with Recuenco put him back to P12 but he went straight back into P11.

On lap four a manoeuvre on Garrett saw him gain P10. Maintaining this placed him less than a second off a podium place in Chrome class, finishing fourth.Race two saw a fifth row start and Taylor aired on the side of caution after contact ahead and dropped to P11.

The end of lap two saw Recuenco in Taylor’s mirror as he overtook him and gained P10, staying there to pass the line and take another P4 in Chrome class.Qualifying saw Taylor finish in eighth spot with a time of 2:43.967, and line up on the fourth row.Race three was a magificent battle in which Taylor made a good start.

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Podium joy for Mark Taylor in Slovakia. Photo by Richard Kienberger Photography.Podium joy for Mark Taylor in Slovakia. Photo by Richard Kienberger Photography.
Podium joy for Mark Taylor in Slovakia. Photo by Richard Kienberger Photography.

He retained P8 overall (P2 Chrome class) and looked on target for victory.

A good gap saw Newell some five seconds behind and on lap five Taylor was still trying to chase down Halm in seventh.

By lap eight he settled for eighth overall and a fantastic podium second place in Chrome class.A reverse grid for race four was to Taylor’s advantage as he lined up on the scorching tarmac in pole position.

The pressure was on and the strategy was to keep the other 11 trucks behind him.

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Podium Joy For Mark Taylor in Slovakia. Photo by Richard Kienberger PhotographyPodium Joy For Mark Taylor in Slovakia. Photo by Richard Kienberger Photography
Podium Joy For Mark Taylor in Slovakia. Photo by Richard Kienberger Photography

He kept everyone at bay up until lap five, but Championship leader Norbert Kiss had moved up from eighth on the grid and was putting pressure on Taylor to overtake him a lap later.

Taylor was holding onto second when at turn 10 Helm came down the inside of him and Rodrigues went to the right.

It was three aside with some contact between all three, Taylor coming out worst as his left rear was hit with damage to the wheel rim and a slowing puncture.Taylor was back into P4 and a slowing truck was not good, taking him to P6.

He struggled with the damage and on the last lap, last corner, Newell overtook him leaving Taylor to finish ninth and P3 in Chrome class for a well-deserved podium though he should have been on the top step.The team now travel to Zolder in Belgium for the next round on 22nd and 23rd June.

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