17 February 2015
Turkington, Plato join all-star BMR VW line-up
2014 BTCC champion Colin Turkington and runner-up Jason Plato will join forces in a four-strong all-star driver line-up at BMR VW in 2015.
Team BMR has confirmed it will pair defending British Touring Car champion Colin Turkington and runner-up Jason Plato in its team as part of a remarkable four-strong driver line-up in 2015.
Two of the most successful drivers to race in British Touring Cars, Turkington and Plato will drive Volkswagen CCs under the BMR banner alongside owner-driver Warren Scott and Aron Smith, who was confirmed mid-way through the 2014 season.
The announcement marks a relief for Turkington who, despite securing his second title with WSR BMW in 2014, faced an uncertain future when eBay Motors' title backing pull-out left him without the funds to chase a contract renewal. A similar situation occurred in the wake of his first BTCC title in 2009 too, but Turkington is delighted to have avoided the prospect of another year on the sidelines by securing a new deal.
“I'm delighted to be defending my BTCC crown with Team BMR,” he said. “Getting behind the wheel of the Volkswagen is a fresh challenge after seven seasons in rear wheel drive machinery. I know that I'll need to work harder than ever to get up to speed, but I'm extremely motivated to succeed.
“Team BMR is still a relatively young outfit in BTCC, however there is a strong team of experienced personnel behind the scenes working incredibly hard to make sure we can challenge at the front from the off. The collective ambition, motivation and hunger to win made this the perfect opportunity for me.”
Similar to Turkington, Plato – the most successful BTCC driver of all-time with 88 wins – was left with slimming opportunities on the grid having parted ways with MG at the end of 2014.
However, he is pleased to have landed a drive alongside his biggest rival for the 2014 title and is looking forward to going up against him in equal machinery.
"The decision for me to get involved with the outfit just became easier and easier,” he said. “It's a fantastic team of people, it's well funded and it has the right ingredients to bake the best cake there is! It's something quite serious that Warren has put together, he's not playing games.
“The driver line-up is right up there (with any I've been in), we've got two heavyweights in the same team from a technical point of view and the two guys who were the focus last year on track. I think it's going to be amazing. The performance push that both of us will give will help everybody."
With three drivers that can count 123 BTCC wins between themselves, Scott is thrilled to have landed such a prestigious driver line-up as BMR marches on in its quest to become a front-running force in the series.
“I am eager to get started on what will be a very exciting year ahead of us in the BTCC, with the strong driver line-up that we have in place along with a superb team of engineers, mechanics and other members of the Team BMR family,” he said. “I feel confident that we have the potential to be championship contenders in 2015.”
Driving the BMW 1-Series, Turkington beat MG 6GT driver Plato to the 2014 BTCC title by 35 points. However, the last time the pair were racing on track they came together, with Turkington spinning into the barriers and Plato being disqualified for causing the accident.
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