COOPER, S OULTON PARK PREVIEW - MINI CHALLENGE

Cooper Class frontrunner Josh Gollin believes that car tweaks can be the key to him ending Max Bladon’s domination of the class at Oulton Park.

Bladon has very much had the Cooper Class laurels to himself this season, and has so far gone all 11 races this season unbeaten as he continues his monopoly of the top step.

However, Gollin has been Bladon’s biggest rival this season, and benefited from a new body shell and gearbox last time out at Brands Hatch and finished just shy of Bladon in two races as he aims for his first win of the year.

Gollin said the results last time out are encouraging signs that he could soon fight Bladon for the top step in earnest.
We’re definitely there or thereabouts now,” said the Coastal Racing ace. “We had a newly build car at Brands and it definitely made the difference and it seems that each time we run it, it gets better and better.

Max has had it all his own way for far too long, and I do feel overdue a win this season, so hopefully we’ll head to Oulton with that as the aim and we can pull it off.”

I tested at Oulton this week, which is the first time I’ve tested before a race weekend all season and we’ve also had the car on the dyno and found a small crack in the exhaust that was costing me 3bhp, so the signs are there that I can go and fight.
Oulton is perhaps the most difficult circuit we go to all year, and it’s my favourite. It’s a very technical lap and there are some corners where commitment is so key. For instance at Old Hall your turn-in point is much earlier than you’d think and you have to trust the car and make sure you carry the most speed through corners as, with no turbo, it’s all about momentum in the Coopers. Hopefully Brands was the start of a strong end to the season for me.

Cooper S Class leader Steve Cocker is likely to skip this weekend’s double-header in Cheshire, so looks certain to lose the points lead he’s taken so long to claw back after early season technical issues. Tim Porter and Scott Adam will therefore fight it out to assume the championship lead, but will have a fight on their hands with the returning Scott Jeffs, Rob Austin and Ford Fiesta convert Carlito Miracco all aiming for the laurels.