Celebrations at Brands Hatch for BMW and West Surrey Racing
Physical Digital® have just returned from a victorious weekend at Brands hatch as Team BMW were crowned Teams’ Champions, while BMW took the Manufacturers’ crown.
For West Surrey Racing, who run Team BMW from their Sunbury-on-Thames headquarters, the double-title success means they have now won an incredible six outright BTCC crowns in the past four years with the BTCC BMW 125i M Sport; a car of their own design, build and preparation.
With both Colin Turkington and Rob Collards performances across the season, as well as valuable points clinched by Andrew Jordon for BMW Pirtek, they collectively scored crucial championship points which helped BMW to secure the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Manufacturers’ Championship on Sunday.
Turkington's outstanding performance
The weekend wasn’t for the faint-hearted, with a nail-biting title-decider after Colin Turkington’s outstanding performance in race-two, where he climbed from 15th on the grid to win the race, meaning that the title was all to play for in the final race. Hopes were high for the Northern-Irishman to come out on top, only to have them dashed after contact in the final race resulted in broken suspension after he was hit by a rival car. The runner up in the drivers points table said: “It’s a great achievement by the whole team to win the Teams’ and Manufacturers’ titles today and everybody should be congratulated for the hard work they’ve put in over the season. I was proud of my Race Two drive; my best race for a long time, and I felt we had real momentum at that point. Unfortunately, it wasn’t to be. I was in the wrong place at the wrong time and got hit. It’s never easy to come away second best when you’ve gone so close and I’m gutted, but we can still hold our heads high at the job we’ve done this year.”
Having been declared fit to drive following an accident at Silverstone two weeks previous, sadly team mate Rob Collard did not race after being withdrawn from the event on medical grounds.
Rob Collard said: “It’s a real shame I wasn’t able to race this weekend, but I’m proud to have played my part in the Teams’ and Manufacturers’ Championship wins for the second year in a row. I’ve had seven podiums and a win earlier in the season and I’m pleased with this. To finish fifth in the points even after missing the last five races shows how competitive we’ve been across the year. The BMW has been an excellent car at all circuits and two titles is what the whole team deserves.”
Team BMW ended the season with five victories, 20 podiums and nine fastest laps.
Dick Bennetts, Team Principal, said: “It's a fantastic result to win the Teams’ Championship for the third time in four years and to give BMW the Manufacturers’ title in their first season back in the BTCC using the new BMW B48 engine. Every member of the team can be very proud of what we’ve achieved and we are also extremely thankful to our partners, technical suppliers and sponsors, without whom none of this would have been possible. Colin’s drive in Race Two was incredible and the performances he and Rob have put on across the season have shown their quality again and again. I’m gutted Colin’s title bid ended the way it did, but that’s motorsport.”
Thanks from Physical Digital®
Tim Rapley, MD of Physical Digital®, reflected on the season: “It has been a pleasure for Physical Digital® to be a sponsor of West Surrey Racing for the 2017 BTCC season. Both Team BMW and BMW Pirtek Racing run by WSR have been a pleasure to work with and we hope to continue to support them in the future. We have enjoyed following the team from race-to-race and have met many great people along the way. It was a rollercoaster of emotions being at Brands Hatch this weekend and the atmosphere was electric especially during race 2. The dedication and professionalism of the entire team, drivers and fellow sponsors has been outstanding and we are very proud as a company to have been involved this season.”