Championship leaders eBay Motors is preparing for its ‘biggest challenge yet’ as the British Touring Car Championship heads to Rockingham Motor Speedway this weekend.
The WSR team are currently leading the way with Colin Turkington in the drivers’ championship and are also on top in the teams standings, having amassed a total of seven wins so far in 2014.
However Team boss Dick Bennetts is being cautious ahead of the seventh meeting of the season, with the BMW team having only ever won twice at the Northamptonshire circuit, with Stephen Jelley scoring a brace of wins in the 2009 season.
Nevertheless, the New Zealander is optimistic ahead of the weekend’s races and admits that securing a win is not out of the question.
“We had a couple of good wins there back in 2009,” said Bennetts. “Victories at Rockingham have been a little bit hard to come by since then so you could say it’s our biggest challenge yet this season, but we’re in a better position than ever before.
“We’ve developed the BMWs hugely over the last 12 months, so much so that we’re confident in our abilities at almost every circuit, except maybe Silverstone, where top speed is important!
“It would be great to get a win this weekend but more importantly we need to preserve our advantage in the drivers’ and teams’ standings.”
Championship leader Turkington scored a double podium at the circuit in 2013 and, with a 23-point lead in the drivers standings, the Northern Irishman admits that he is exactly where he wants to be at this stage of the season. Indeed Turkington has a larger margin than at the same point in the 2009 season (nine points), which he ultimately went on to win and take his first title.
“We’re exactly where we want to be,” enthused Turkington. “We know that things can change very quickly in the BTCC, however, so we’ll keep on pushing until the very end.
“Rockingham hasn’t always been the easiest venue for us but we’re confident we can produce the goods this weekend.”
Rob Collard also heads to Rockingham in confident mood, fresh from scoring his first win of the season last time out at Knockhill. The Hampshire racer is enjoying his strongest-ever season in the BTCC and is currently fourth overall in the championship standings.
“It was a great weekend at Knockhill,” admitted Collard. “We’ve been on the podium six times and I’ve consistently finished inside the top six, so now I want to just carry on that momentum and hopefully score some more wins.
“We’ve got a teams’ championship to win, plus of course Colin is going for the drivers’ title, but I have also got a top-three title finish in sight. Everyone in the team is just working so hard and what they have done with the BMW is incredible.”
The team’s third driver, Nick Foster, also came close to securing his first podium of the season last time out in Scotland, giving him renewed confidence ahead of the weekend’s races.
“It was good to be fighting at the front but a shame to miss out on a first podium,” said Foster. “Overall it was a good weekend for everyone in the team and the confidence is there wherever we go, so I’m looking forward to the fight at Rockingham.”