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Colin Turkington ‘delighted to be back’

With an air of uncertainty about the car’s performance, Colin Turkington will make his British Touring Car Championship return at Brands Hatch, after three years away from the series.

“I’m delighted to be back – it’s like I’ve never been away really and I’m just looking forward to getting back behind the wheel,” said Turkington to TouringCars.Net. “I’m excited about the potential that it’s got.”

With the new BMW 125i M Sport only unveiled two weeks ago at Brands Hatch the team have faced a race against time to be fully ready for the first meeting of the year – and Turkington himself has had very little pre-season seat time.

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“We were at Brands Hatch last week but we only had one car finished and shared it between three drivers so I only had about an hour’s track time in the new car.

“My car is just being finished off [at the media day]. We’re starting from scratch and we just have to get the car working and learn about the car before we start looking into tyres. We have to start right at the beginning and get all of the fundamentals right before we do things like that.

“It didn’t feel too dissimilar [to the S2000 cars] but track time has been very limited, so I don’t know exactly how the car behaves. We’re all excited about the potential.

“It’s so hard to know where we’re going to fall into the pack. I’m one of 32 and to do my best is the first thing.”

When quizzed about whether he will return to the World Touring Car Championship in 2013 – as he has done in the past three seasons, Turkington admitted that it was possible.

“I really enjoyed my time [in the WTCC] and the races that I did – it was a great experience – but this is the focus now, being back in the BTCC. I’m sure I’ll be dipping in and out of world touring cars from time to time.”

Dick Bennetts, WSR Team Principal, reiterated that it was still early days for the team’s new cars, and that he’s hoping for progress after a few meetings. The team only had two cars present at the media day test session, leaving Nick Foster and Rob Collard to share a car.

“Nick’s done two hours and now we’re changing the seat for Rob. Colin’s just shaking the brand new car down. We’re have to make sure that everything’s bedded in properly.

“We need more time with the car to understand it fully. We don’t know how it compares to our previous 3-series because it’s too new, so we need to get a couple of races under our belt. We’ve got a lot to learn because it’s a BMW but it’s got all of the NGTC suspension and to run a rear-wheel drive one might take a little while.”

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