A SMILING Rory Butcher celebrates on the podium in front of his home crowd at Knockhill.
But that only tells a small part of the story of a dramatic Porsche Carrera Cup weekend for the Celtic Speed racer.
Troubles during qualifying were followed by a major shunt in race one, leaving the Kirkcaldy ace fearing his weekend was over.
However, team mechanics worked wonders to get him back out for race two, and Rory rewarded their efforts with a second place finish.
Rory explained: “Qualifying was tough and proved really difficult to get any space to put together a clear lap.
“Just when you thought you had a flying lap, someone would be slowing down to get their own space and that compromised your lap time.
“But there are no excuses, I know the place well enough but it just shows how tight the competition is in the Porsche Carrera Cup.”
Despite his difficulties finding a hot lap, Rory secured challenging starting positions of sixth for race one and fifth for race two.
However, race one came to a premature end as Andy Meyrick crashed into the Fifer, sending him spinning out of the race.
Race stewards looked at the incident and Meyrick was excluded from the race.
“I was so worried that the weekend was over as the front took a big hit,” Rory said.
“We knew we had to make the car totally structurally safe or else Porsche would not let us out.
“The team had to rebuild the car, but they also found time to make some adjustments to the set-up. It was an amazing job.”
Rory made it back onto the grid to start race two in fifth place, and after a hectic first few laps, and some daring overtaking manoeuvres, he found himself in second place.
“There were cars going off everywhere and there was radiator fluid spilled on the track, but I had a real fire in my belly and took advantage of the tricky conditions,” Rory said.
Rory admitted he was taken aback by the noise and flag waving from the Scottish fans as he ended the second race in second place.
“There is no better feeling than standing on the podium in front of your home crowd,” he said. “The sea of faces and the cheers at the podium was something else.
“I was just so happy to have got a result for the team who had worked so hard to repair the car and for my sponsors, most of which only get one real chance a year to see me and I was on the podium.
“I felt it showed what we are like as a team and what kind of skills we have.
“Hopefully we have made them proud of the fact that they support me and Celtic Speed.”
n TOURING car ace Gordon Shedden’s hopes of a home victory went up in smoke at Knockhill. The Fifer was third in the opening two races of Sunday’s triple header, but ventilation problems forced him into the pits in race three.