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CLIO CUP RACE WINNER STREATHER AWAITING MEDICAL CLEARANCE BEFORE 2017 CHALLENGE CAN FINALLY BEGIN

•    Injured racer aims to get season belatedly underway at Donington
•    Medical clearance required before Streather can compete
•    Hopes high Hinckley racer will be passed fit for Thursday’s test

Leicestershire racing driver Paul Streather is counting the days until this week’s officially timed Renault UK Clio Cup test at Donington Park on Thursday, 13th April, as it’s where he will find out if he has been passed fit by doctors to compete in the second event of the 2017 season.

After suffering concussion at Brands Hatch just over a week ago, when his car was ploughed into during the practice day for the championship’s season-opening event, Streather can only wait to see if he’ll be permitted to venture out onto his ‘home’ track a few days from now.

Forced to miss qualifying and the first two rounds of the season as a result of his injuries, the Hinckley driver – who went into his second year in the Clio Cup as a genuine title contender – has all but seen his hopes of fighting for the championship evaporate already.

As a natural fighter though, with terrific East Midlands spirit, the 27-year-old says if he’s given the all-clear to take part in this week’s test day and Easter weekend’s race meeting at Donington, he will be aiming to be right at the sharp end battling for podiums and wins.

“It was really disappointing to miss the first two rounds as, other than feeling a bit sore, I felt fine mentally – but I know the doctors have to take these things very seriously”, said the Michael Smith Switchgear and AVW Fabrications-backed driver, “If we get signed-off on Thursday morning, I’m fighting fit and raring to go. Fingers crossed, we’ll have better luck at Donington.”

Prior to the incident in the second of the pre-Brands Hatch practice sessions, Streather had been third fastest in the morning and well on course to be a contender for pole position, with the clear potential to try and repeat his race-winning performance from the Kent track 12 months earlier.

Praise from throughout the Clio Cup paddock went to his WDE Motorsport team for the truly remarkable efforts made in striving to repair the wrecked 2.0-litre Clio in time for Brands Hatch qualifying, should Streather have been passed fit at the time by the medical experts. 

Working tirelessly through the Friday night, the team fully re-shelled the car and even applied brand new livery by 6am the following morning – a monumental and unprecedented effort and one which Streather wants to repay with podium silverware sooner rather than later.

“I want to be back out there doing what we do best and I really want to repay the team for the incredible efforts they made at Brands Hatch – I’ve never known anything like it”, he added, “To fully re-shell and repair the car, especially after seeing the state the Clio was in after the shunt, was amazing. Everyone at WDE has been absolutely incredible, a massive thank you to all of them.”

Should Streather be given clearance to take part in official testing at Donington Park National Circuit on Thursday, 13th April, qualifying for rounds three and four of the Renault UK Clio Cup season will follow on Saturday, 15th April, at 14.00.

On Sunday, 16th April, the opening contest will get underway at 10.00 with race two scheduled to follow at 15.50 – the second encounter will be screened live on ITV4 and streamed live online at www.itv.com/btcc 

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