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Shedden: “Brands Hatch brings Touring Car Racing alive!”

Thursday, March 28 2013

Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Champion Gordon Shedden starts the defence of his title at Brands Hatch this Easter (30/31 March) and isn't expecting an easy ride this season. The Scotsman is one of four champions on the grid in one of the strongest fields for years.

Gordon is gearing up for a tough fight if he is to retain his crown. "There's a good half a dozen in with a chance of the title and there could even be twelve drivers able to win races," he predicted.

"I would hope particularly myself and Matt are in there! Colin (Turkington) should be there, he'll be fine but it depends on WSR. They have plenty of experience to be good enough and have enough people and resources to have no excuses. Andrew Jordan's got the same equipment as us so there's no reason for him not to be there, plus there's Mat Jackson."

With two champions in the garage, Honda has a very strong line-up, something that isn't lost on Gordon: "The biggest competition for me is Matt as he has the same car and tools as me. It's well documented that our main goal is to get a Honda in front and we are the benchmark."

That intra-team harmony is something that the drivers have been keen to emphasise ever since the unfortunate last lap clash between Shedden and Neal at Oulton Park in 2011. The three-time champion was genuinely delighted despite losing the title but is unlikely to be giving points away.

However Gordon's biggest challenge at Brands Hatch isn't the opposition. His previous two campaigns have been blighted by poor luck in the opening round and he has yet to record a win at the Kent circuit. Not that it's putting him off: "I'm looking forward to Brands but it hasn't been kind to me, so hopefully I'll get a clean run this time."

His strategy for the weekend is straightforward: "Traffic management in qualifying is important as it looks like we'll have a huge field this year and it's a short track. The starting position is critical, so you need to maximise every corner and stay out of trouble.

"It's a great way to open the season, the circuit's natural amphitheatre brings Touring Car racing alive!"

Tickets for the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship at Brands Hatch on 30/31 March are available on the gate from £13 with free entry for children aged 12 and under. For more information call 0843 453 9000 or click here.