The second half of Mike Epps’ debut BTCC season has been something of a downward spiral since the summer break. With several races brought to an end through contact and other mechanical issues, he has been unable to show his promise in recent weekends.
Despite having his first Jack Sears Trophy win at Snetterton in late July, the Hertfordshire racer is adamant that his potential is far from realised and hopes a cleaner weekend of racing this weekend at Silverstone will reward him and the Team Hard. Racing crew the results they deserve.
The RCIB Insurance backed 24-year old commented: “It’s been a bit of a mare since May really. Looking back, every weekend since Thruxton we have had some sort of slip-up along the way. Oulton was a puncture in race three, the alternator failed at Croft in race two, then came Snetterton, where I spent more time avoiding accidents and being fired off onto the grass than actually racing.”
Similarly, Epps then suffered DNFs in the second races of both Knockhill and Rockingham as a result of contact, putting him at the rear of the grid for race three and essentially blunting his weekends.
“We just need a clean one really, one without the nightmares, the contact and damage. We were sixth fastest in race two yet I was shoved off from behind five or six times during that race. It’s really frustrating; you wouldn’t get away with that kind of move for the lead!”
Commenting on driving standards, Epps said: “I get it, It’s touring car racing. I knew it would be rough. The famous saying echoes around the paddock, ‘rubbing is racing’ - but sometimes I feel that ramming is just plain ramming. It’s slightly unfair on some of us further down the grid too when some of those up front talk about us as a group. I haven’t had a single reprimand all year and I pride myself on that while others are getting themselves back of the grid penalties.”
“I think once we get a clean shot at racing nearer the front, things will show themselves. Silverstone is my local, I know it well and have had strong results there, so I’m confident of a stronger result this weekend.”
Catch the next BTCC rounds live on ITV4 from 10:45am Sunday 18th September.