Team UK Touring Car entry Chris Smiley wraps up TCR UK title
Chris Smiley has concluded his preparations for the upcoming 2022 FIA Motorsport Games in Marseille (26 – 31 October) after wrapping up the TCR UK title at Snetterton last weekend.
The Northern Irishman made the trip to the 1.9-mile ‘200’ configuration of the Norfolk circuit tied level on points with fellow contender Isaac Smith, and in the knowledge that out-scoring his chief rival across the double header would wrap up the first touring car title of his career.
The 30-year-old from Carrickfergus took a stride in the right direction after putting his Restart Racing-prepared Honda Civic Type R FK8 on pole position, from which he took a lights-to-flag victory over Smith in the opening race.
That left him tenth for the reverse grid race, and one spot behind Smith, but Smiley expertly wove his way through the field behind Smith, before the latter went off, to end the campaign on the podium in third, and wrap up the coveted crown with Smith only able to recover as high as seventh spot.
“It’s been an awesome year; we’ve really enjoyed it. It’s had highs, it’s had lows, but this just makes it all worth it in the end.
“The car was absolutely on rails; I don’t remember having a ‘moment’ all race. I just kept composed. I got a good start, and honestly, I was just following Isaac – if there was a gap, I was going down the inside.
“It was one of those things where, there was little point at the start of the race when he was getting away a little bit, and I thought ‘I maybe need to get going here’, but I did what I needed to do, and a big thanks to Bert Taylor and all the guys. What a job.”
Smiley’s TCR experience could prove vital as Team UK – Motorsport UK’s national entry into the second edition of the FIA Motorsport Games next weekend [26-31 October] – make the trip to the south of France in search of medals.
He will join up with 17 other competitors across 10 disciplines for a global celebration of the sport in all it’s forms. For more information on Team UK, click here.