New TCN Logo

Upcoming events:

New TCN Logo

Jason Plato: ‘There are two championships here’

A frustrated Jason Plato has claimed that there are ‘two championships’ on the go in the British Touring Car Championship, after seeing rear-wheel drive rival Colin Turkington extend his points lead at Rockingham.

Plato had been expected to go well at Rockingham, having been on the podium at the circuit four times in the previous six races held there. In the end it was the 46-year-old’s team-mate Sam Tordoff who scored pole position on Saturday, with Turkington separating the two MGs in qualifying.

On raceday Plato scored a brace of podium finishes and was seventh in race three, but the former double champion was beaten by champion-elect Turkington in all three races, with the Northern Irishman taking a double victory in the process.

- Advertisement -

“It’s been a good weekend for the team, we’ve taken the best results we could,” said Plato. “We’re leading the manufacturers, we’ve got the team award and we’re the best of the rest. We leave Rockingham as leaders of the BTCC front-wheel-drive championship, and you’ve got to say we’re doing a better job than anyone else that is in the same boat as us.

“It’s great to be ahead of Gordon [Shedden], but it isn’t what it seems, there are two championships here; there’s a championship for one car and a championship for the rest. The reason why I get so passionate and vocal is because the series is meant to be equal. This is my business. This is the product I sell to make my living. This is how I earn my money; and we’re getting turned over. I have a responsibility to my sponsors, my investors and the team to say when it’s not right.”

Plato is now 55 points behind Turkington with only 20 points available for a win and six race remaining. The experienced racer admits that for him the championship battle is over, despite being second in the standings.

“We just can’t fight them the way it stands, and you may as well give Colin the championship now,” added Plato. “I want to be clear. I’m not taking anything away from Colin as a driver or WSR as a team; they are operating fantastically well, but my aim as the season has progressed has been to become the best of the rest. Realistically I can’t do any more than that.

“Credit to the team, they have been brilliant this weekend and the results show that; it’s been a big effort. It would be a great achievement for everyone involved in this programme if we could give MG the manufacturer’s championship, that’s where our sole focus is now.”

Team Principal Ian Harrison insists that it is imperative that regulations are looked at soon, predicting an unsustainable situation if not.

“We did a solid job at Rockingham with both the drivers managing their pace in the FWD part of the championship,” said Harrison. “It would have been tempting for them to attempt to challenge Turkington over more laps than they did, but it would have only come back to bite them towards the end of the race with tyre degredation.

“Looking forward though, we, like all the teams on the grid with FWD machinery, need to know where the regulations are going, because unless there is either a focus on re-equalising the grid, or the introduction of a FWD and RWD Championship, the current formula is flawed and unsustainable”.

- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -

Stay Connected


Must Read

- Advertisement -

Related News

- Advertisement -


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here