The next round of the BRSCC Avon Tyres Northern FF1600 Championship will run on Oulton Park’s International circuit as originally planned, despite a push to switch to its Fosters layout.
The series makes its third visit of the season to Oulton Park later this month on October 12 and, like the previous round held there in August, will use the International circuit.
Some of the drivers due to be competing were keen on a switch to the shorter Fosters layout, which is being used by other categories on the same day, and the BRSCC indeed investigated the possibility.
The BRSCC’s FF1600 co-ordinator Ian Smith today confirmed to FF1600website however that a layout switch had been ruled out by Oulton Park circuit owner MSV.
Smith confirmed that, following further discussions with MSV, the circuit cannot be changed to the Fosters layout for the test day on the Friday beforehand, and therefore the races will be run on the International circuit as originally intended.
Smith had told FF1600website during the National FF1600 meeting at Brands Hatch last weekend that a switch to the Fosters layout was being considered, but depended on being able to change the layout to the Fosters circuit for the test day as well.
“It was considered, but it might get changed [back to International layout],” Smith explained to FF1600website at that point.
“It was supposed to be on Fosters along with the XRs [XR Challenge Saloon championship] but, speaking to the person here who is in charge of testing for Northern’s next race circuits, he doesn’t think we can change circuits for the test day so, if we can’t test on Fosters we might have to revert to the International.”
B-M Racing’s Tom McArthur, one of the drivers due to be competing at the Cheshire meeting, had expressed support on social media for the layout switch.
“Given how regularly we race on the International circuit at Oulton, what would everyone think of racing on the Fosters circuit on the 12th [October]?,” McArthur wrote on Facebook. “We’ve not raced on Fosters since 2015 and I’m pretty sure most people would agree it’s a great layout.
“The XRs are already doing the Fosters circuit that day and we’re after them for every session on the 12th. It would also make for a better racing spectacle as the field would spread out less.”
McArthur’s team boss Andy Brickles, who confirmed to FF1600website that B-M is planning to run four cars at Oulton Park, was also supportive of a switch.
“I’d welcome it,” Brickles told FF1600website. “We only ever seem to race on the International circuit. The Fosters circuit offers very good, close racing so, why not?”
“We’ve done well on Fosters before. Dave McArthur [Tom’s brother] – who is racing with us [at Oulton] in two weeks’ time – has the Fosters lap record so I know he enjoys it as well.
“It’s a nice circuit, and it’s nice to vary it as well. If you visit the same circuit four times [including the National FF1600 round] in the year, you do want a bit of variation, so it would be good if it happens.”