Team BMW head to the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship finale at Brands Hatch this weekend aiming to take a clean sweep of series titles.
The WSR-run team head the Manufacturers’ and Teams’ points tables and have Colin Turkington second in the Drivers’ Championship after 27 thrilling races of a dramatic season that has taken many twists and turns.
With just this weekend’s triple-header at the legendary Brands Hatch Grand Prix Circuit to go, Northern Irishman Colin lies 10 points away from the championship lead with 67 available, and must carry 66kg success ballast.
The Portadown driver, who has won three times this year, has fantastic memories of the track as it was the scene of his 2009 and 2014 BTCC title successes; both achieved in WSR BMWs.
His team-mate Rob Collard, who lies fifth in the points table, is fighting fit after a speedy recovery from a heavy accident at Silverstone in which he was an innocent victim.
The strength of the BMW prevented the Hampshire driver from suffering serious injury, but the car suffered significant damage, meaning the WSR team have spent the past 10 days building up a 125i M Sport around a spare shell.
Rob carries 39kg success ballast as he aims to add to the seven podiums he’s already scored this year.
The Brands Hatch triple-header on September 30-October 1 is the last of 10 events in this year’s BTCC, which takes in nine circuits the length and breadth of the country. Every round is screened live and exclusively on ITV4 in HD.
Colin Turkington said: “Everything we’ve worked for over the season comes down to this weekend and I’ll be giving it my all to win a third BTCC title. The BMW has been incredibly consistent on all types of circuit and this boosts my confidence. What will matter on the day is having the skills and experience of winning championships. Together with WSR we’ve been here before and know what to expect. I have all the tools I need to get the job done and will be making my charge at reducing the points gap from the get-go. It can be more favourable to be the hunter on the final weekend so I’ll be drawing on all my experience to use that advantage.”
Rob Collard said: “What happened at Silverstone was a massive blow to my championship, but despite a huge incident I’m race-fit and ready for Brands Hatch. The team has done an incredible job to build a new car for me in just over a week, so I’m hoping to say thank you by finishing my season on a high. I have a key role to play in trying to secure the Teams’ and Manufacturers’ crowns for WSR and BMW and to support Colin in his battle for the Drivers’ title. Having consistently been in the top three of the Drivers’ Championship all year, my aim is to maximise my points haul at Brands and improve on fifth overall.”
Dick Bennetts, Team Principal, said: “There’s a lot at stake this weekend; we could potentially win three championships, or we could walk away empty-handed, so we have to use all the tools in our armoury to make sure we’re not disappointed. We’ve won two Drivers’ titles on the last day of the season at Brands Hatch with Colin driving BMWs. He’s a fantastic driver and we aim to give him what he needs to be champion again. It’s very good to have Rob back after the heavy accident at Silverstone, in which he was an innocent victim, and the guys at the workshop have done an incredible job to build a car so quickly from a bare shell. He’ll play a crucial role in trying to help us wrap up the Teams’, Manufacturers’ and Drivers’ titles.”