BDC ROUND 1 2018 – Rockingham- Concrete Jungle.
With Funk Motorsport onboard for another year, preparations began early for Oliver Bolton to get the S13 ready for a year of fierce competition with the BDC round 1 at Rockingham Motor Speedway.
‘So as the drift season came to an end, it was time to give the S13 a makeover in the winter months leading up to BDC round 1.
Our goals for the S13 were to make it reliable and a lot lighter to get it down to the 1000kg mark.
So the stripping began by us cutting the front and rear end… quite literally off!
We had the front and rear tubed, making working on the car more accessible, lighter, increasing airflow and in the event of an impact it will be easier to repair.
With a full fibreglass rear 1/4 clam shell, fibre glass tail gate, fibre glass doors, wings, bumpers, bonnet and body kit, we began to see our weight saving in action! All the glass was removed and Lexan was installed all the standard wiring loom was also cut out and replaced with a simple light weight one.
Next up was the fuel set up, it did have a standard S13 fuel tank in the boot in a 4mm metal plate where the tyre well was but now has an ATL race fuel cell, Bosch fuel pumps alongside HEL braided fuel lines.
We have now installed a stronger diff, shafts and hubs to improve the unreliability of the diff that we experience last year. The drive now has a triple plate clutch and lightened and balanced flywheel re-built gearbox. The exhaust is now a bespoke system to allow changes at quieter tracks if need be. The engine was rebuilt and tuned by protuner running at a safe 430hp.
For a new look for the 2018 season, we added purple metal flake paint and a rocket bunny v2 kit. It was sure to stand out!
We arrived at BDC round 1 on the Saturday morning after another late night at Protuner installing a new turbo and mapping ready for the day ahead.
The car was a little sketchy to say the least as I had only managed to gain seat time twice since the rebuild, with issues on both occasions. I started to get the line dialled in and as morning practice came to an end, I was feeling more confident. I had around 6 practise runs, with my final run fast approaching, I thought to myself “this is the one”.
Confident in the cars ability, I lined up for my first run. After being given the thumbs up, I headed to clip one and threw the s13 in confidently. The run felt really good, managing to score a 75 on my first run, putting me in 2nd place.
My second run didn’t feel as good as my first run as I ran slightly shallow on clipping points 2 and 3 but I was still happy! From the second run I scored a 72, proving 2 fairly consistent qualifying runs. I was extremely happy to end up qualifying in 5thposition.
Top 32 with Ronan Catterson in his s14.
Pulling off the start line in the lead position, I made some good ground. As I got past clip 2 I saw the chase car only start to move again. Knowing I now had a 10/0 advantage, it took the pressure off for the second run.
In the chase position, I gave Ronan space in case he had the same issue with his car. He managed to pull a few car lengths in front of me but by mid track I had gained proximity again and maintained it till the end. On to the top 16!
Top 16 with R Dalby-Smith
In the lead position once again, I pulled away from the start line and got the 13 on the wide line and managed to continue the run on the clips and pull a little gap. Dalby-Smith’s chase was a good one and I was happy with my lead run. On to the chase run.
I tried to keep proximity from the off but he managed to pull a bit of a gap. Knowing I had a bit of work to do, I began playing catch up. I made a few dives to try and gain more proximity, and found myself across the finish line.
I thought it was a close battle and I was certainly unsure of the outcome. I opened my drivers side door and waiting anxiously for the result, “Going though to the great 8, is Oliver Bolton” I was chuffed with the result!
Top 8 with Alistair Sutton.
I have been competing with Alistair frequently at King of the Ring, so know his capabilities. My plan was to pull a gap before clip one so Alistair would have to play catch up. Off the start line, I initiated into the first clipping point and over cooked it, the track conditions had changed since last being out on track and it was a lot slipper than anticipated. After sending it into the corner, I span out, leading to a 10/0 advantage for the spin.
My Chase run was a little scrappy, not enough to overturn the disadvantage.
So that brought me to the end of BDC round 1. Overall I’m very happy with the top 8 finish and I’m now currently sitting in 5th place in the Pro-Am championship.
Congratulations to Lee Scott taking the win, Kristians Burkovs in 2nd place and Alistair Sutton in 3rd.
The S13 performed faultlessly all day and overall feels much better to drive after the rebuild.
I would like to thank my title sponsor Funk Motorsport for the continued support into the 2018 season alongside all of my other sponsors for all their support.
I would also like to thank my family and friends for putting the time and effort in when they could. Without any of you, this couldn’t happen!
Roll on round 2 at Teeside.
To read more about Funk Motorsport’s partnership with the British Drift Championship for 2018, https://www.thebritishdriftchampionship.co.uk/2018/03/16/funk-motorsport-partner-bdc-2018/
To see the Heat Management Range, featured on Oliver Bolton’s S13, check out https://www.funkmotorsport.com/product-category/heat-management/
Photography by BeasyMedia https://en-gb.facebook.com/beasymediauk/