Will Powell: "The amazing thing about TCR is that you can race them anywhere!"


June 07, 2021

by Phil Kinch

The 2021 Maximum Networks VW Racing Cup, incorporating the Goodyear Touring Car Trophy & TCR UK has attracted a lot of new entries and see increased competition across the first two events held at Silverstone and Castle Combe. One of the drivers in the field is Will Powell, Managing Director at Motus One and the man who has been behind the wheel of the #77 Hyundai i30 N TCR this year.

Downforce Radio took the time to catch up with Will to learn more about him and Motus One, what led him to join the UK series and where he would like to race his Hyundai the most given the chance...

Downforce Radio: First of all, can you explain a little about who you are, where you have raced previously and what Motus One is?

Will Powell: I’m a driver and a businessman but I’ve worked in motorsport my entire career. That’s everything around the sport: race driving, coaching, precision driving, marketing, sponsorship, events.

I stopped driving for a few years to focus on the business side and that didn't sit well with me, so we started a race team at Motus One. Over the years I’ve raced everything from Toyota MR2s to Renault Clios to Radicals. In the last couple of years, we helped develop the Brabham BT62 and raced that with David Brabham.

DF: This year is your first time in driving both a Front wheel drive car and also driving a TCR car. What led you to bring the team to the Maximum Networks VW Racing Cup, incorporating the Goodyear Touring Car Trophy & TCR UK?

WP: I’ve been asking myself the same question – maybe it would have been easier to stick with GT cars! No, I’ve always loved watching touring cars and I didn’t want to reach the end my driving career without trying it.

We’ve had a great relationship with Goodyear as a close partner and Stewart Lines as a friend for a few years so Touring Car Trophy was the perfect place to learn the discipline, both from a team and a driver perspective.

I’ve been fortunate to get into the Hyundai i30N TCR which is a fantastic race car. We tested alongside my team-mate Max Hart and got up to speed in the offseason. My sponsors at Moorgate Motorsport Finance were supportive of the move so off we went!

DF: How much did you know about TCR Competition before making the decision to join the Maximum Networks VW Racing Cup, incorporating the Goodyear Touring Car Trophy & TCR UK this year?

WP: We did our homework and knew what we were getting into. As a team, we bought some experienced touring car guys in to support us. We knew the Hyundai was a good car having watched the progress of the Kents and Max’s pre-season testing pace.

I knew it would be competitive and that the drivers at the front of the TCR UK grid would also be at the front of any other touring car series, which has proved to be true. It’s a quality series that is growing all the time.

DF: The first two events at both Silverstone and Castle Combe have not been kind to you with various issues with the car or contact from other competitors. With Brands Hatch two weeks away, how does this affect your mindset and how do you plan to get back into the mix?

WP: If anything, I’m in a better mindset than I’ve been all season. The first two meetings haven’t gone to plan so the pressure is completely off! We had technical issues in the first meeting at Silverstone, then at Combe, my best lap in qualifying was deleted and I got taken out on lap one moving through the pack.

A guy making a guest appearance made a mistake under pressure that ruined our weekend; there was no apology, but that’s racing, and for the most part, everyone in TCT has been great. The truth is I have nothing to lose now so I’ll enjoy the rest of the season learning to go fast in a touring car with no pressure.

DF: the unique selling point about TCR is that you can take your car and race it in any series, still being on equal terms thanks to the global Balance of Performance. If you could race the teams Hyundai anywhere, where would it be and why?

WP: It really is the amazing thing about TCR and something that’s been noticed by a lot of our customers doing other series with us who might want to get into it.

There’s so much you can do; TCR Europe is the obvious one but then you get carried away and look at some of the marquee events like Daytona, Macau, Bathurst all running TCR cars. We run a number of customers with business interests in different countries so you may see Motus One pop up on a TCR grid abroad next year. 

DF: With the second half of the season approaching, many drivers and teams are already looking to 2022. Do you have any plans in place yet and do they involve continuing with the Hyundai in TCR Competition?

WP: Indeed. There are a few things lined up for me in touring cars that will be announced soon. I’m really fortunate to have a parallel GT programme driving with Dave Scaramanga for our sponsor Moorgate Motorsport Finance which is a multi-year deal.

The next stage of that will be confirmed at the end of the season. From a team perspective, there’s no question that Motus One we’ll be running TCR cars in Touring Car Trophy for customers after this initial learning year. Despite my setbacks, we enjoy the series and are pleased to be part of its growth and development.

Downforce Radio sends its thanks to Will for taking the time to catch up with us and wishes him all the best for the rest of the season.

The next round of the 2021 Maximum Networks VW Racing Cup, incorporating the Goodyear Touring Car Trophy & TCR UK is the triple-header that takes place at the Brands Hatch Indy circuit on June 18-20.

Image Credit: Jakob Ebrey Photography

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