Having taken his first win of the World Touring Car Championship season in Germany, Andy Priaulx endured a trying weekend as the European season came to a close at Imola.
Priaulx avoided a multi-car incident at the start of race one despite dropping back from seventh to eleventh, although he was able to fight back into the points and lay eighth going into the penultimate lap. However, contact late on saw him damage his car and he dropped down to 15th at the flag.
“At the re-start the pace set by Gabriele Tarquini in the lead was incredibly slow, and caused me to hit Sergio Hernandez in front and be hit from behind by Alain Menu,” he said. “There was nothing any of us could do. However, this damaged my rear bumper, which went over my exhaust. I lost power and then with the bodywork rubbing on the left rear tyre its temperature shot up to 160 degrees and I lost grip.”
Race two saw the BMW Team UK driver finish just outside the points in ninth place, although he retains fourth in the standings heading to Japan for the penultimate round of the season despite his failure to score.
“It was not brilliant for us and was a lot of hard work,” he said. “It could have been great, but we needed a bit of luck and it was not on our side. I have to just make sure I do my best in the remaining four rounds so I can be as high up as possible in the championship.”