SPECTATORS at Knockhill Racing Circuit turned out in force to enjoy one of the biggest events on the West Fife sporting calendar last weekend.

Thousands of fans descended on Scotland's national motorsport centre, located to the north of Dunfermline, for the annual visit of the Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) and were treated to thrilling racing.

Kelty's Ronan Pearson, and Kirkcaldy's Rory Butcher, who has worked as an instructor at the venue, were amongst four Scots on the grid for rounds 19, 20 and 21 of the 2023 series, and the former gave them plenty to cheer.

Competing in his debut season, the 21-year-old posted his best finishes in the championship to date, with a fifth and a seventh place followed by a fourth in the weekend's third and final race, which he had led for a long spell.

On an unforgettable weekend, Ash Sutton won the final race, the start of which was delayed, before beginning behind the safety car, due to a heavy downpour.

He overhauled Pearson, as did Josh Cook and Tom Ingram, with the latter, an EXCELR8 Motorsport team-mate, taking third on the final lap as he chases down Sutton in the chase for title glory.

Jake Hill collected wins in each of the other two races, whilst Rory, in 15th and 12th places, finished inside the points in the final two of the weekend.

Stuart Gray, director of events at Knockhill, was thrilled with how well it went, and with the feedback received from those who attended.

"Paul O'Neill (former BTCC competitor) called Knockhill the jewel in the crown in touring cars, and we're proud to be called that," he said.

"It had everything. The first race to start off the day, it was dry. The second race, it was dry. The third race, it was under the sea. We had biblical rain!

"The feedback from the fans has been fantastic. It is a world class event and the weather was irrelevant. They loved the spectacle and the drama - everything was off the scale.

"There always improvements and learnings to be had, but we're absolutely thrilled."

Ronan's efforts saw him land silverware for being the leading driver across the weekend in the Jack Sears Trophy, which is open to all drivers who, at the start of the season, hadn't recorded an overall podium finish, or the Jack Sears Trophy, previously.

He led the final race after beginning on pole in a reversed grid, and Stuart added: "Obviously, the conditions changed and the safety car came out, but if there hadn't been the safety car, he could've been away. But that's the nature of touring car racing.

"He left with silverware and his time will come."

The next major event at Knockhill will take place over the weekend of August 26-27 when, for the first time in more than 15 years, the venue will host a truck event in the shape of Supertruck Scotland.

For more information, visit www.knockhill.com.