Team BMW continue their fight for the British Touring Car Championship north of the border this weekend as the series embarks on its annual trip to Scotland’s spectacular Knockhill Racing Circuit.
Colin Turkington leads the Drivers’ Championship by 30 points after a tough weekend at Thruxton last time out, and is aiming to consolidate his advantage with a strong showing in his WSR-run BMW 330i M Sport.
BMW Pirtek Racing’s Andrew Jordan had reduced leader Colin Turkington’s series advantage to 30 points by beating his fellow WSR BMW 330i M Sport driver in all three races at Thruxton last time out, and is keen to carry that momentum to the 1.3-mile circuit near Dunfermline.
Andrew’s second place in the championship means he carries 48kg success ballast into practice, qualifying and Race One in Scotland, and with only nine races of the season remaining, he knows now is the time to strike as he bids to add to his 2013 title.
“Thruxton was a tough weekend,” commented Team Principal Dick Bennetts. “Some of the other cars were able to make performance gains in relation to us, so that even once the success ballast came off, driving through the field wasn’t possible. Knockhill should suit our BMW a lot better because you need good traction and the ability to ride the kerbs well, which are two strengths of our 3 Series.
With three triple-header weekends remaining and Turkington aiming for a record-equalling fourth BTCC crown, he will use the knowledge gained from two wins and nine podiums in the past six years at the Fife track to propel him through the weekend.
Turkington , who has won five times in 2019, was a double podium-finisher on the BTCC’s last visit to Knockhill, as was WSR stablemate Andrew Jordan; his nearest rival for the championship.
The pair have raced superbly so far in 2019 with their efforts, plus those of Tom Oliphant, putting BMW at the head of the Manufacturers’ title race and Team BMW into second place in the battle for the Teams’ Championship.
Tom has finished on the podium twice in 2019 including a career-best second place at Oulton Park in June.
The Leamington Spa-based 29-year-old was the highest BMW points-scorer at Thruxton last time out as he recorded top-10 finishes in all three races.
He was a double-winner at Knockhill on his way to the Ginetta GT4 Supercup title in 2015 and had the best weekend of his rookie BTCC season there last year with seventh place in qualifying and the opening race.
Lying 11th in the championship – ahead of nine active BTCC race winners – Tom has the advantage of coming into the weekend without success ballast, while points leader Colin carries the maximum 54kg, and has the heaviest car in the championship.
The Knockhill triple-header on September 14-15 is the eighth of 10 events in this year’s BTCC, which takes in eight circuits the length and breadth of the country.