After a shortened World Series campaign due to the Coronavirus pandemic, Aaron Dew was declared the 2019/20 National Hot Rods English Points Champion; now he is looking forward to the return of racing and the long road ahead towards the 2021 World Final.
Speaking about how it feels to be the English Points Champion, he said; “It feels good! It was a shame that we were unable to complete the series, but we worked hard to get to the top of the points, so it’s nice to be rewarded for the team’s efforts. I’m now looking forward to running the silver roof for the next year.”
Dew fought off the challenge of 2019 European Champion Jason Kew to win the series by 11 points after the completion of seven rounds – his best ever finish in the English World Series. In the previous year, the Suffolk-based driver finished a very respectable fifth place in the points, one position better than he managed the year before.
Dew admitted that he changed his approach to racing last year, which helped him find more consistency and elevate him to the top of the points charts.
“Consistency, I think was the main thing,” he confirmed. “We have had the pace in previous years but was inconsistent when it came to the racing. I would have one good heat and then a really bad one and as a result, make the Final hard work. I focused a lot more on getting two good heats to give us a decent starting spot for the Final, to allow us to challenge for a position in the top-five.”
In the six qualifying rounds run last year (the Northampton Shaleway meeting was cancelled due to poor weather), Dew only failed to finish in one race throughout the entire series. In all the Finals, Dew finished in the top-10 every single time with a lowest finishing position of seventh, which he got at the opening round at Birmingham.
After the closure of the Birmingham Wheels Raceway earlier this year, it has been pleasantly announced that a new lease on the site has been signed, guaranteeing racing on the site in the not too distant future with Spedeworth/Incarace running Stock Car meetings in conjunction with Pete Gould and PRI.
The new English Points Champion Dew spoke of his ‘Marmite’ relationship with the track, but also admitted he is pleased to see the popular Midlands venue back.
“The more tracks we can save, the better it is for the sport as a whole,” he explained. “It gives us another track to potentially race at too. Birmingham has never been one of my favourite tracks in truth, but the last few times we have been there, we’ve found something with the car that really works well there. If we do go back to Birmingham, I’m sure it will see a good entry of cars.”
The first English World Series round of the 2020/21 season takes place at the Foxhall Heath Stadium, Ipswich on Saturday 25th July – a track which has had mixed results for Dew in the past. Despite this, the Ipswich racer admits he is looking forward to racing again for what will be his, and the National Hot Rods first meeting in 2020.
He said; “I’m really looking forward to it after getting back in the car two weeks ago, at the Ipswich practice day – I soon got the buzz back and now I can’t wait to go racing again!”
Speaking about his aims for the upcoming campaign, Dew first of all states the importance of qualifying for the World Final whilst carrying on improving and developing his Ginetta.
“First of all, qualify for the World Final, that’s always the first priority,” he explained. “The second is just to keep improving from where we finished off last season. We’ve made some winter changes to the car, so have some new things to try – we want to try and improve the car and get even more out of it over the course of this year.”
Given the unfortunate situation we have found ourselves in recently, it has been announced that the National Hot Rods will now have the same prize money schedule as that of the 2LTR Hot Rods. Furthermore, the race fee that each driver must pay before each meeting has been increased from £10 to £25.
Dew understands the reasoning behind these changes and admits it’s a small fee to pay to ensure the safety and survival of the sport going forward.
“It is what it is, Spedeworth is a business at the end of the day, and so far, this season they have had no income but still expense going out,” he explained.
“If we want the sport to continue and us to all enjoy the racing, a small increase in race fees is acceptable if it helps to keep everything ticking over and getting cars back on track. It could also allow us to slowly start allowing more and more spectators back into the stadiums. It’s still a very small fee to pay for us to go racing when you look at the entry fees for other motorsport disciplines.”
In further National Hot Rod news, it has also been announced that Carl Boardley has decided not to renew the CBM product on the NHR constructors list – meaning that any new car supplied or constructed by CBM will not be allowed to race as a National Hot Rod. For Dew, this shouldn’t impact him too much going forward, as he goes on to explain.
“For us Ginetta drivers, it shouldn’t impact us much, as its for newly built cars only,” he explained. “I don’t really get involved in all the politics though; we try to just keep focused on ourselves.”
It has also been a hugely successful last few months for team Dew off the track, when last November, Aaron and his Wife Kelly welcomed their son Harley into the world. Now Dew admits he is looking forward to taking him racing so his son can watch his Dad race.
“I’m loving every minute of it,” he said when asked about what fatherhood is like. “Harley has made the time with no racing a lot easier – it’s nice being able to spend so much time with him, which has been great. Now, I can’t wait to get him to the track to start watching Dad race and get him into the sport from an early age. It’s important to start them young!”
As is the norm nowadays in any Motor Racing formula, Dew has a big team of helpers and sponsors behind him – all of which he is greatly thankful for.
He said; “First of all, I must thank my entire team; my Dad, Mum, Kelly, Harley, and Jack who not only is the best number one mechanic, but he’s also the one who spends the hours in the week preparing the car ready for every race meeting – doing all the things people don’t see that needs to be done to keep the car fast and reliable on track.
“I also must thank Carl Boardley Motorsport, together we have been forever improving the Ginetta and Duratec combination. We certainly wouldn’t be where we are without them. And finally, my sponsors; Needham Electrical Ltd, 1k Engineering and CEF Cities Electrical.”
Dew starts the defence of the English Points title at his local track this Saturday night for the first race meeting in 2020 for the National Hot Rods.
By Jordan Hollands.