Just six races remain in the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship this season and it is still all to play for across every championship.
With title battles set to intensify at Silverstone and Brands Hatch GP, a host of drivers will need to toe the line after picking up penalties over the course of the season.
Under the current championship regulations, drivers that are penalised on three occasions are forced to start from the back of the grid at the next race. As well as that, drivers are docked three points in the overall standings too.
New for this season has been an automatic one race ban for drivers that are penalised four times. At Rockingham last time out, MG Triple Eight Racing’s Josh Cook was hit with his third and fourth strikes.
Pending an appeal that has been lodged by the team and heard on Friday 15th September, the 26-year-old could be forced to sit out the opening encounter at Silverstone next weekend.
Both Tom Chilton and Jake Hill have been issued with three penalties each as well, meaning that one more could see them given a one race ban.
Sitting on the cusp of three strikes and serving a grid penalty are four drivers, one of which is championship leader Ashley Sutton. The Team BMR was penalised twice at the Brands Hatch season-opener and has since stayed out of trouble on his way to taking six wins and building up a 12-point lead at the top of the standings.
On the cusp of clinching a maiden title in only his second season in the BTCC, one more strike for Sutton could be pivotal in deciding the destiny of this year’s championship.
Andrew Jordan, Rob Austin and Adam Morgan are the other names that currently sit on list of two strikes after 24 races.
Beyond them, a host of drivers have found themselves in front of officials at some point during the year.
Jack Goff, Gordon Shedden, Rob Collard, Matt Neal, Mat Jackson, Rory Butcher, Mike Epps, Will Burns, Stewart Lines, Senna Proctor, Martin Depper, Chris Smiley, Dave Newsham, Ollie Jackson and Stephen Jelley have all been penalised once.
Luke Davenport and Jeff Smith were also both penalised once in the opening four events before they’re campaigns were cut short due to the incident that took place in qualifying at Croft.
Away from those being penalised; Colin Turkington, Jason Plato and Tom Ingram are three of several drivers that have clean records thus far.
However, with two events to go and drivers keen to make their mark in both the races and overall, the penalty list could yet be added to.
PHOTO CREDIT: Jakob Ebrey Photography