Honda officially confirms Neal and Shedden
Honda Racing will enter the 2015 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) with consistency firmly on its side, after confirming an unchanged driver line-up of Gordon Shedden and Matt Neal.
Renowned for its innovative and creative approach, Honda boasts an impressive track record in the BTCC – the UK’s premier motor sport series – with no fewer than 22 titles to its credit. Over the 20 years that Honda has been involved in the fiercely competitive series, the constructor has claimed four outright drivers’ crowns and six overall team championships.
With the forthcoming season speeding rapidly into sight, both drivers are champing at the bit to take to the track and show the opposition just what they are capable of – and are confident of celebrating the manufacturer’s 20th birthday in the championship in fine style.
“We’ve shown over the past few seasons that we’re never afraid to push back the boundaries and come up with something different and new that really engages the fans,” underlined 2012 BTCC Champion Shedden, who finished third in the drivers’ standings last year with three victories to his name. “The Civic Tourer was fantastic for us and created history in many ways, and I’m sure what we have planned for this year will generate a bigger buzz still!
“We approach every new season with optimism, and the goal remains the same – to try to win the championship. The priority as ever will be the manufacturers’ championship for Honda, followed by the teams’ title for Team Dynamics – and of course, both Matt and I are keen to get to the last round and still be in with a shout of lifting the drivers’ crown.”
Neal endured a more challenging 2014 campaign, finding himself plagued by ill-fortune and all too often on the receiving end of rivals’ mistakes, but as a three-time title-winner, he knows exactly what it takes to win in the cut-and-thrust of the world’s toughest touring car championship.
“The anticipation surrounding Honda’s new car for 2015 is immense and we can’t wait to show it off,” he enthused. “I’m confident it will be a step forward in every area and a very potent weapon.
“We had a difficult season at times in 2014, but that only gives us renewed motivation to climb back to the top. We still have massive self-belief in our ability to build and run a front-running touring car, and we are ready to put up one hell of a fight!”
“We are delighted to re-confirm ‘Flash’ and Matt for a sixth season at Honda Racing,” added Honda UK Managing Director Philip Crossman. “They have demonstrated time and again that not only are they ultra-committed racers and proven winners – champions, indeed – but also that they are consummate team players.
“Their strong working relationship will be pivotal over the coming months as we seek to reclaim the manufacturers’, teams’ and drivers’ crowns for Honda – and we can’t wait to show off the new car in which they will take to the track in 2015.”
Honda’s 2015 BTCC challenger will be officially unveiled at the championship’s Season Launch at Donington Park on 24 March. The opening three rounds of the season will take place at Brands Hatch in Kent over Easter Weekend (4/5 April).