Team BMW hoping to thrill at Thruxton

Team BMW hoping to thrill at Thruxton

Team BMW return to scene of landmark win

Team BMW return to the scene of a landmark victory at Thruxton this weekend determined to get back to winning ways in the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship.

BMW scored their 100th BTCC victory at the Hampshire circuit last year as drivers Rob Collard and Colin Turkington took a win apiece in their WSR-run BMW 125i M Sports.

Local hero Rob, from Eversley, Hampshire, is looking forward to his home event, with average qualifying speeds of over 111mph making Thruxton the UK’s fastest circuit.

He has been on the podium for each of the past five seasons – including a memorable victory in 2017 – and is due to chalk up his 450th BTCC start in Race Three on Sunday.

Team-mate Colin began his 2018 season with a podium finish at Brands Hatch and he’s aiming to add to his four previous BTCC victories at Thruxton.

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He lies 10th in the Drivers’ Championship, but with the podium finishes having been shared by 13 different drivers from 2018’s opening six races, the Northern Irishman remains in the hunt for a third BTCC title and knows that a top-three result could catapult him up the table.

His Thruxton victory with WSR in 2006 remains – at 11.591 seconds – the largest winning margin in the BTCC for 22 years.

WSR-run cars have scored 14 podiums and five wins in the past 12 seasons at Thruxton and more success will help BMW move up from its current second spot in the BTCC Manufacturers’ Championship.

The Thruxton triple-header on May 19-20 is the third of 10 events in this year’s 60th anniversary BTCC season, which takes in nine circuits the length and breadth of the country. Each race will be screened live and exclusively on ITV4 in HD.

Rob Collard said: “Thruxton is my local circuit and I’m determined to give my home crowd something to cheer about. I’ve finished on the podium there for each of the past five seasons and my win last year was particularly satisfying because it came after an intense battle in the early stages and a three-wide pass into the chicane that is one of the best moves I’ve ever pulled off. You have to give your rivals a lot of respect when racing wheel-to-wheel here and you have to look after your tyres in the early stages; which is something the BMW always allows me to do. I’m looking forward to it.”

Colin Turkington said: “We had a short test day at Thruxton last month and this gave us good a direction for the race weekend. It is by far the most abrasive and demanding circuit on the calendar and this provides a great challenge, not least for the tyres. It’s all about tyre management. We need to use the two practice sessions on Saturday to get an understanding for what setup will work over a single qualifying lap, but also what will work over the race distance on Sunday. It felt amazing to celebrate BMW’s 100th BTCC win here last year and we will do everything we can to add further success to that story this weekend.”

Jordan targets Thruxton success

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Meanwhile, BMW Pirtek Racing driver Andrew Jordan aims to turn his excellent 2018 race speed into three strong results as the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship visits Thruxton this weekend.

With average lap speeds of over 111mph in qualifying, the Hampshire venue is the UK’s fastest circuit and was the scene of BMW’s 100th BTCC win last year, courtesy of a double victory for WSR-run 125i M Sports.

Andrew, from Lichfield, Staffordshire, is a master of Thruxton’s high-speed sweeps. He took pole position there in the BTCC in three consecutive seasons from 2012-14 and has two wins and nine podium finishes to his name.

The 2013 BTCC champion has a 100 per cent finishing record so far in what has been the most closely-fought start to a campaign in living memory with five winners and 13 different podium finishers from the first six races.

He knows that a victory would likely move him into the top six of the Drivers’ Championship, while reigning Manufacturers’ Champions BMW are also determined to move up from their current second spot in the points table.

The Thruxton triple-header on May 19-20 is the third of 10 events in this year’s 60th anniversary BTCC season, which takes in nine circuits the length and breadth of the country. Each race will be screened live and exclusively on ITV4 in HD.

Pirtek Press Release Pic 2 Web4

Andrew Jordan said: “Thruxton is one of my favourite circuits because it’s so high-speed and there’s no better feeling than winning a wheel-to-wheel battle with another driver around one of the long corners here. You need to be brave, but you also need a well-handling car - like the BMW - that enables you to extract maximum performance from the tyres in qualifying, but also to look after the rubber over a race distance.”

Dick Bennetts, Team Principal, said: “We head to Thruxton aiming to add to the podiums we achieved at Brands Hatch and to re-establish ourselves at the head of the Manufacturers’ Championship. We’ve been pretty pleased with our speed in race trim at both Brands Hatch and Donington, whatever the weather conditions, although luck hasn’t always been on our side and converting that pace into results has been a challenge. This championship is shaping up to be the closest in years and we have to dig deeper than ever before to make sure we’re in the mix. A fully dry weekend would allow us to show the true potential of the BMW, as we were able to last year at Thruxton when we won two races. Thruxton is a circuit that holds some very happy memories for us, such as the double win we scored last year to give BMW their 100th BTCC victory, but memories don’t win you championships and we’re focused on this weekend. As a track, Thruxton places very high demands on tyres; so much so that the rules dictate all cars must use the hard-compound Dunlops in all three races to reduce the risk of punctures. Our BMWs have traditionally allowed our drivers to look after their tyres well over a race distance and this should mean we’re able to race our way towards the front as the laps count down.”

The Physical Digital team will attend Thruxton this weeekend in support of West Surrey Racing (WSR), as Technical Partners. For information on how our 3D scanning and reverse engineering services can benefit your buisness, contact us now! 

Credits: Written by Jamie O'Leary from Top Step Communications, on behalf of West Surrey Racing. 

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