Team BMW's Ricky Collard has admitted he surpassed his own expectations after securing a sensational front-row qualifying result for tomorrow's opening British Touring Car Championship race at Silverstone.

Standing in for his injured father Rob Collard at West Surrey Racing, Collard Jr produced a stunning performance to qualify as the highest BMW driver on only his third weekend in the BTCC.

Singapore #5 Circuit of Champions

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Collard came within 0.018s of denying Motorbase Performance's Sam Tordoff his first BTCC pole of the season.

"It’s a credit to the team," Collard told Crash.net. "I don’t even think I drove very well. I think I drove quite well in the free practice sessions. Again, that may come back to the inexperience. I was having some big slides.

"I was thinking ‘I’ve lost a couple of tenths here’ but I looked back down on my delta and it was quicker.

"My dad [Rob Collard] told me these cars like to move around and not to worry if they slide. I was trying to focus on letting it slide and having some fun. I’m just super pumped for tomorrow. I’m super excited now.

"I said before I went out ‘I’d like a top-ten’. I was P26 at Rockingham and P12 at Knockhill. I had the aim of chipping inside the top-ten but yeah, front row!"

Looking ahead of tomorrow's opening race, Collard Jr is confident he can get the jump on Tordoff at the start of the race as the BMW Motorsport Junior driver vies for what would be a famous debut win in the series.

"I’m excited. I’m really looking forward to tomorrow because I know we can get a good start. I’ve always had good starts. I’m sure Tordoff will make a blinding start like he always does," Collard continued.

"If you actually look at the Fords, they get good starts. I’ve just got to make sure I get a good start and capitalise into turn one.

"I’m excited to be at the front a bit more and out of the carnage, especially with the whole grid being covered by so little!

"If you make one small mistake in the race it’s going to be really costly. There’s a lot of right handers so if you get pushed wide you can come out of sync."

 

 

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