Oliphant

West Surrey Racing driver Tom Oliphant was “gutted” to lose out on the Jack Sears Trophy to AmD Tuning’s Rory Butcher in 2019.

At the start of 2019 Oliphant made it clear that it was his target to win the Jack Sears Trophy, having moved to West Surrey Racing and Team BMW, and despite fighting for the win for the majority of the season, he eventually lost out to Butcher.

But having reflected on the season, Oliphant was pleased he was able to get back in the fight for the trophy after Butcher had a strong start to the year.

“The first half of the season Rory was fighting for the lead of the championship and he had a great start to the season,” Oliphant said to Last Lap.

“He has a little bit more experience than I do, you know he had another year or half a year experience than I do in touring cars and he has done a lot of GP racing across the world and he just got on to a better start really.

“I personally, halfway through the year, thought the Jack Sears was out of reach, but due to my form picking up and him having a bit of bad luck it kind of came back to me.

Although Butcher won the trophy by a 36 point margin, Oliphant feels that had he and BMW had done things differently, then he could have won it instead, but that it was hard to take points off Rory with nobody else in the fight for the trophy.

“I think if we had made the right decisions, we could have won it,” added the BMW driver.

“I think the first wet race, when it rained when everybody was on slicks, I think if we had done something different, I think we could’ve ultimately challenged for the Jack Sears.”

“But the way the Jack Sears works, it was only me and Rory winning the races so ultimately, unless there was a massive change in conditions, because we were the only two in a car capable of winning it was very hard to take points off each other.

“Rory did a great job and he is a deserving winner of it.

“I was gutted to lose out on it, but it taught me a lot.”

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