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Colin Turkington confident of Team BMR – Subaru package

Team BMR’s Colin Turkington has spent the majority of his tin-top career in the British Touring Car Championship (BTCC), as well as capturing the drivers’ title in 2009 and 2013, but is eagerly looking to potentially be in the title fight in 2016.

Speaking with TouringCars.Net on the Sunday (17th January) at the Autosport International Show in Birmingham, the Ulsterman admitted that it didn’t take long for him to adapt from the rear-wheel drive BMW at West Surrey Racing to the front-wheel drive Volkswagens that Warren Scott’s outfit used last season.

“I had to adapt to the front wheel drive car last season, and with the common components across all the cars across the grid, the feeling isn’t massively different between front and rear-wheel drive,” said the 33-year-old, who took his first win in 2015 at the second race at Donington Park.

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He also mentioned that the new Subaru Levorg that BMR will be running this year will have its fair share of teething troubles, with a very short time for all four cars to be built and ready for the official BTCC Media Day on March 22nd.

“I guess that what I am able to bring to the table is the fresh rear-wheel drive experience, along with my engineer Kevin Berry, who designed the 1-Series, so I think that gives us a lot of information,” he explained, along with mentioning that the VW CC that the team ran last year still had possible potential.

“This includes the pitfalls of what to avoid when designing a car, as well as having an understanding already, as to what the car needs to feel like and how we can achieve the most from it.

“With the Subaru, it gives us the chance to challenge for titles over the next few years.”

Turkington would eventually finish fourth in the overall drivers’ standings, just seven points behind three-time BTCC champion, Honda Yuasa’s Matt Neal, who also is the most experienced on the grid.

“The BTCC is incredible, and it gets stronger every year, and harder to win the title every year. The level of competition always rises and everyone now has a good car. If you look back 5-10 years ago, if you weren’t in the right car, you couldn’t win, but everyone has a chance to win.”

The new Levorg, which brings on board Subaru UK and Ireland as the latest manufacturer to join the BTCC this year, Turkington had plenty of positives to say about the car that will be powered by the mountune-tuned Boxer engines.

“The car is a great shape, aerodynamically, the uniqueness of the Boxer engine being tuned on by mountune. So I think we should have a strong package, straight out of the box, and there’s likely to be teething problems,” he explained, saying that with any new car that gets brought in that it will take time to get the Levorg up to speed.

“With the whole grid having to adapt to the new RML kit, and 2016’s a pretty good time to start producing the new car. It’s going to mean we’ll be limited on track time before the first weekend of the season.

“We will have a better chance of testing throughout the season with the new car, and I think we’ve got up to nine days, so I think we can still play our way into the championship this year.”

He’s one of three current drivers that have two titles to their name in the BTCC, with reigning and defending champion Gordon Shedden and Plato, who narrowly missed out at the last race weekend of the season.

Turkington is hoping for another chance at his third title, which would put him on level pegging with Honda Yuasa’s Matt Neal.”It’s usual for five guys to be going to Brands Hatch with a chance of winning it, and both myself and Jason went to Brands with a chance, but he got closest. Well, personally, I’m hunting for that third championship, seeing Matt on three and Andy Rouse on four, so it would be good to have another one.”


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