Exocet Racing’s Rob Austin admits that he is ‘frustrated’ not to have been able to score a win in the British Touring Car Championship races at Knockhill, after the Audi driver scored two podium results in the weekend’s races.
Austin, who scored his first-ever pole position at the Scottish circuit in 2013, was again on fine form in qualifying on Saturday, qualifying in third. That became second when the session’s fastest man Colin Turkington had his grid penalty from Snetterton applied.
In race one Austin was running in second position early on, before contact from the Honda of Gordon Shedden when defending third position saw him spin down the order to fifth. As further incidents unfolded in front, Austin was able to climb back to second behind eventual winner Matt Neal.
In race two Austin finished in third position – taking his third podium finish of the season – despite contact with Shedden and eventual winner Mat Jackson.
Austin was disappointed to have lost out on the chance to take a win as a result of contact from other drivers.
“While I’m delighted with our results I can’t help feeling frustrated – I really wanted a win and had the car and opportunity to achieve that in races one and two,” said the 33-year-old. “Unfortunately I was denied that because certain drivers don’t think I deserve to be at the front and I shouldn’t be allowed to overtake them. Given time I’m sure they will come to realise that they can only get away with treating people like that for so long. I know I’m not the only one who’s fed up with it.
“But I won’t let it affect what I’m doing on track or the way our team goes about our racing. If they want to do that then fine but it’s not our style. We’ll continue to fight fair and go for the wins at Rockingham.”
Austin praised his team members for their role in his double podium weekend – only the third time in his BTCC career that he has stood on the podium in two consecutive races.
“In essence it’s been a very successful weekend. Everyone in the team, from the mechanics to all our sponsors, have really pulled together very well and we’ve capitalised on a circuit where we know we can be strong – I also love Knockhill and being on the podium here, particularly with such a huge and enthusiastic crowd – is always a special experience. It’ll be very important to do the same at Rockingham in two weeks,” concluded Austin.