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  • Writer's pictureLIAM REDFORD

Charlotte Birch claims class victory in Track Action season opener

Charlotte Birch began her 2024 season with victory in class NA on her return to the Track Action series at Brands Hatch, which served as preparation for her full campaign in the Milltek Sport Civic Cup.


Charlotte Birch, 2024 Milltek Sport Civic Cup, Brands Hatch
Photo credits: Jakob Ebrey Photography

Charlotte Birch began her 2024 season with victory in class NA on her return to the Track Action series at Brands Hatch. The meeting served as perfect preparation for Birch’s full campaign in the Milltek Sport Civic Cup, with the opening round of the championship taking place at Brands Hatch in less than two weeks’ time.


After qualifying fourth overall, Charlotte dropped to seventh at the start of race one before fighting back to finish fourth, while claiming a dominant class victory.


Following an appearance at the official Milltek Sport Civic Cup media day at Snetterton earlier in the week, Charlotte travelled to Brands Hatch to compete in the opening round of the newly renamed Track Action series. This was a great opportunity to build upon her winter testing and gain competitive track time in a multi-class event. Birch enjoyed multiple trips to the podium in a one-off Track Action appearance at Silverstone last season and was looking to replicate this achievement at her home track.


Qualifying took place on Monday morning with predominantly dry conditions for the Track Action drivers, with damp patches off the racing line. A busy Brands Hatch Indy circuit with 25 drivers competing for space meant that getting a clean lap time in would be a challenge. Charlotte did a superb job to improve on her fastest time throughout the fifteen-minute session which saw her qualify her NA class Honda Civic in fourth place overall, while claiming class pole position.


Starting race one from the second row of the grid, Birch made a good initial start but dropped to sixth overall at the end of lap one. With frantic action among her competitors, Charlotte was aiming to keep it clean and bank valuable experience ahead of Milltek Sport Civic Cup campaign. After the Renault 5 of Thomas Frankland moved ahead, Birch was seventh before she began her charge back through the field.


Lap three saw the Vinna Sport driver overtake Joel Daniels, before passing David Clark for a position inside the top-5. Birch continued to grow her class NA lead during this period and re-passed Frankland on lap nine.


With a sizeable gap to Vauxhall Vectra of Marshall Groves ahead, a podium finish appeared to be a tall order. Nonetheless, a series of personal best laps allowed Birch to close in and take the checkered flag just two tenths of a second behind her rival, while claiming victory in class NA.


Although Birch did not take the start for race two, it was a valuable weekend of track time ahead of her full campaign in the Milltek Sport Civic Cup. Charlotte was able to enjoy some close battles in race one, learning the strengths of her Honda Civic against a variety of different machines.


Now her attention will focus on the opening round of the Milltek Sport Civic Cup, in support of the TCR UK Championship, which will take place at Brands Hatch on the weekend of 13th/14th April.

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