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BTCC’s Colin Turkington: “It’s not in me to give up”

Saturday, September 24 2016

Double Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Champion Colin Turkington still has hopes of a fairytale end to Subaru's debut season in the series at Brands Hatch next weekend (1/2 October), despite scoring just ten points in the opening three events.

Colin's Subaru was only completed 24 hours before the season-opener at Brands Hatch and the team was forced to withdraw from the Thruxton event, effectively missing the opening third of the season. "If you'd told me at the start of the year that I would go into Brands Hatch with a mathematical chance after those first three meetings, there's no way I'd have believed you," the Ulsterman said.

"All credit to the team for working hard and not giving up and to go into the final 37 points behind is remarkable really. I'm really pleased that I've still got a chance."

There's a precedent here for Colin; in 2013 he returned to the championship after a three-year sabbatical in a brand new BMW 1-Series, and entered the final event at Brands Hatch with a shot of the title: "Yes, similar feelings really, obviously 37 points is a lot to make up in one race weekend. Realistically my chances are mathematical, but still I'll go there to give it my best shot, it's not in me to give up until I'm told otherwise!

"Certainly this season has mirrored 2013 in the inconsistencies; you have tracks where the car works really well and others where it requires a bit more thought and it's more difficult, but what we're doing is building a platform for next year. We've done that quite successfully; all the gremlins are gone, we have a consistently fast car at most tracks now. The package will only get better the longer we have with it and the more we refine it, so it's exciting to think what lies ahead."

Colin expects no favours from team-mate and fellow contender Jason Plato, but then he doesn't see this as a disadvantage. "All through the season it's been every man for himself and the good thing is it's that way for everybody going into Brands as there's two sets of team-mates in the top eight. Nobody is going to be helping anybody because everybody believes that they have a chance to win.

"I'm satisfied with the huge leaps we've taken the car through the season, that's been a job well done for the whole team and I've had three race wins and a couple of pole positions, but I want to close out the season really strongly. It's not just Jason I'm worried about finishing in front of, I want to finish as high up as I can.

Brands Hatch could be the perfect place to end Subaru's debut BTCC season on a high, and it's one that Colin enjoys, not least because he won both his titles here. "The Grand Prix circuit is a real flowing track," he said. "I think we will be strong there; there's no reason why not, particularly in the second half of the lap where you're carrying a lot of momentum and you require good chassis balance. I think that's where we should excel, so I'm looking forward to a really good competitive weekend."

BTCC title contenders
1. Sam Tordoff, 278pts
2. Gordon Shedden, 267pts (-11)
3. Matt Neal, 265pts (-13)
4. Robert Collard, 261pts (-78)
5. Mat Jackson, 257pts  (-21)
6. Andrew Jordan, 247pts  (-31)
7. Colin Turkington, 241pts  (-37)
8. Jason Plato, 220pts (-58)

Tickets for the BTCC finale at Brands Hatch on 1/2 October are available in advance from £27, with free entry for under-13s. For more information call 0843 453 9000 or click   here.