Turkington responds to claim victory
The race for victory in the second Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship contest at Croft was a role reversal of the opening bout as Team BMW’s Colin Turkington this time fended off Subaru star Ash Sutton to claim the honours.
Turkington’s BMW 125i M Sport made a good getaway and he was side-by-side for the first part of the lap with pole-sitter Sutton. By the time the duo had emerged from the chicane it was Turkington into the lead with Sutton and Rob Collard behind.
The trio immediately pulled away from the chasing pack before enjoying a nip and tuck battle for the rest of the race. Sutton’s Levorg seemed to attack and defend in equal measure with the BMW and Subaru machines seemingly evenly matched.
Despite consistent jostling the positions would remain the same until the finish, meaning a quartet of records would be shattered by ‘King of Croft’ Turkington and his West Surrey Racing team.
That result makes it 50 wins for BMW with WSR, 75 overall for WSR in the BTCC, a record 12 for Turkington at Croft and a record 17 for WSR at Croft.
Reigning champion Gordon Shedden experienced another steady race to claim fourth, ahead of another BMW versus Subaru battle. In a similar scrap to the podium positions it was Jordan holding off Plato until the finish.
Mat Jackson was unable to maintain his race one pace in the Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Duo Ford Focus, but he still claimed a credible seventh place, whilst his team-mate Martin Depper scored his first points of the season with tenth.
In-between the two Fords were the Handy Motorsport Toyota of Rob Austin and AmD Audi of Ollie Jackson, with the former further rewarded with a reverse grid pole. It was a season-best result for Ollie, as it was for his AmDTuning.com team-mate Ant Whorton-Eales in 11th – a BTCC career high for the young Clio Cup champion.
Colin Turkington said: “It’s great to get another milestone for BMW. Wins aren’t easy to come by so to notch up 50 between WSR and BMW is a huge achievement. I had to work hard for it and the race was won off the start. He got a cracking launch and I was under pressure for the whole race. No wins are easy to come by but this was a particularly tough one. We went up to the chicane side by side and as we discussed through the drivers’ briefing there’s no way that can happen without someone heading for the grass, so I had to take avoiding action. I could see Rob (Collard) in third and I was hoping he’d have more pace to pressure Ash (Sutton) early in the race. My heart rate was already at 180, trying to defend early on so the hard work was done.”
Ash Sutton said: “The start was key in race one. We bogged down a little bit but we lost out in turn one and I was straight back onto the attack. Another podium though, so what more could I want? The last couple of laps it was like someone flicked a switch and I felt like I had a puncture or something. We know that wasn’t the case though, so we’ll work on the setup to solve those problems.
Rob Collard said: “To get another podium at Croft and a fifth of the year is fantastic. I wanted to be second or to go after the win but it was hard up against the Subaru – a real cat and mouse game. It’s nice to bring the BMW home on the podium. There were a few times I attacked but Ash (Sutton) didn’t make any mistakes. We couldn’t show our pace at the very end there which is a shame, but bring on race three.”
2017 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship – Round 14 – Croft
1 Colin TURKINGTON (GBR) Team BMW 15 laps
2 Ashley SUTTON (GBR) Adrian Flux Subaru Racing +2.445s
3 Rob COLLARD (GBR) Team BMW +2.890s
4 Gordon SHEDDEN (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +14.954s
5 Andrew JORDAN (GBR) BMW Pirtek Racing +17.864s
6 Jason PLATO (GBR) Adrian Flux Subaru Racing +18.029s
7 Mat JACKSON (GBR) Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Duo +21.310s
8 Rob AUSTIN (GBR) Handy Motorsport +22.523s
9 Ollie JACKSON (GBR) AmDtuning.com with Cobra Exhausts +23.920s
10 Martin DEPPER (GBR) Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Duo +24.265s
11 Ant WHORTON-EALES (GBR) AmDtuning.com with Cobra Exhausts +31.860s
12 Michael EPPS (GBR) Autoaid/RCIB Insurance Racing +32.554s
13 Senna PROCTOR (GBR) Power Maxed Racing +33.990s
14 Aiden MOFFAT (GBR) Laser Tools Racing +34.220s
15 Adam MORGAN (GBR) Ciceley Motorsport +34.241s
16 James COLE (GBR) Adrian Flux Subaru Racing +35.987s
17 Matt SIMPSON (GBR) Simpson Racing +43.802s
18 Matt NEAL (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +44.032s
19 Dave NEWSHAM (GBR) BTC Norlin Racing +44.367s
20 Chris SMILEY (GBR) BTC Norlin Racing +45.046s
21 Dennis STRANDBERG (SWE) Team Parker with Maximum Motorsport +45.553s
22 Jack GOFF (GBR) Eurotech Racing +48.899s
23 Josh COOK (GBR) MG Racing RCIB Insurance +1m12.163s
24 Josh PRICE (GBR) Adrian Flux Subaru Racing +1 lap
25 Jake HILL (GBR) TAG Racing +4 laps
26 Will BURNS (GBR) Autoaid/RCIB Insurance Racing +9 laps
27 Stephen JELLEY (GBR) Team Parker with Maximum Motorsport +11 laps
28 Tom INGRAM (GBR) Speedworks Motorsport +14 laps
29 Tom CHILTON (GBR) Power Maxed Racing +15 laps