24 June 2014
Turkington calls for consistent BTCC title race approach
BTCC leader Colin Turkington denies his RWD BMW has an advantage over its rivals as he calls on WSR to maintain its 'consistent' racing approach.
BMW's Colin Turkington has called for a consistent approach from himself and his WSR eBay squad in what the 2009 BTCC champion believes will be an 'unpredictable' title race and denied his RWD machine has an unfair advantage over its rivals.
Turkington, ever present as a leading front runner, has recently assumed formidable control of the series following a metronomic last couple of BTCC weekends in which the Ulsterman has either won or finished on the podium in four of the last six races.
The 2009 champion, now in his second season back in the BTCC after a brief hiatus from the championship, leads the standings by eleven points from the leading factory Honda effort in the shape of Gordon Shedden.
Turkington says, although their BMW 1 Series has proved to be a more complete package compared to last season's machine the WSR man, nevertheless, believes they have come a long way since the start of the year, pinpointing their development as a driving factor in their recent Oulton Park exploits.
“Oulton Park is somewhere where the BMW always goes well all be it the 1 series we have now or the 3 series we had in the past,” Turkington told .
“It's a track where we know what is suited to the car but alongside that we have made significant steps forward with the car from the start of the season. We started with a much more consistent package than we had last year. Even over the course of the opening four events we've made the car quite a bit stronger.
“All the elements came together, the track suited the car and that coincided with that us making a significant step forward with the car. To get two wins in one day was a good day's work.”
Since BMW's recent success in the hands of the new series leader, the hot topic within the BTCC paddock has been what place the RWD Audi's and BMW's has on the grid with a number of key FWD figures voicing their grievances at their 'unfair advantage' in the current NGTC specification.
When asked whether he believes their frustration might boil over onto the circuit, Turkington poured cold water over the idea and clarified, on his part, that the advantages which both sides have under their armoury even themselves out over the season.
“I don't think we have a competitive advantage against anybody. So far we've had one strong result at Oulton and if you look at the other guys' performance, the Honda won three races at Thruxton and Brand Hatch. The MG won two races at Donington so we haven't done anything more than the others.
“I think the main area of concern in their opinion is how the BMW gets off the line, again that's the nature of RWD and that's something that goes towards us. Equally the FWD guys have advantages with their cars which are slightly less visible. Tricks they can do to the car in qualifying with the diff which can make it very fast over a single lap.
“Each car has its strength and weaknesses which all come into their own on different tracks more so than others. But over the course of the season it evens itself out. I can't see there being too much of a problem as the season goes on.”
Finally the 32-year old added, although circuits like Croft, Knockhill and Rockingham have traditionally treated the BMW well in the past it would foolish to isolate weekends and target big points.
Turkington echoed the need to play the long game in a championship he believes will only increase in competitiveness as the year progresses.
“The championship is so unpredictable. There are tracks, when you look at last year, like Croft, Knockhill and Rockingham where it's been good for RWD,” he said.
“It's hard to pinpoint certain events; it's more how things go for you on the day. There are so many different elements that can happen in a weekend.
“As I've said before, we don't try and isolate certain weekends and think we've got to score big here. Hopefully we've done a good job in making the car fast in all circumstances so we can be competitive at all remaining rounds. As the season goes it becomes even more competitive and guys in the mid-table improve their cars and everyone's fighting at the front.
“Hard to say we can go anywhere and dominate like that again but as long as you can remain competitive then you've got a chance.”
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