James Nash is hoping that his strategy of targeting consistent points in the TCR International Series continues to pay off in the season finale this weekend in Macau, as he looks to hold on to his points lead and take the title.
Nash heads into the season finale on the streets of Macau with a 17-point advantage over nearest rival Stefano Comini.
The Craft-Bamboo Racing driver knows that it is not enough of a gap to be able to relax – especially in Macau – but he nevertheless remains confident of his chances.
“The points gap isn’t enough for me to be able to relax, but it’s nice to go into the last round in the lead,” said Nash. “We’ve been working all year for this opportunity and have had a strategy of being consistent high points scorers instead of maybe proving our ultimate pace with lots of race wins but perhaps running at much greater risk of failing to finish races too.
“I was surprised actually to learn that nobody has secured more podiums this season than me so it is a strategy that has worked so far and hopefully will continue that way for a little longer.”
Nash is one of four title contenders, including defending champion Comini, Craft-Bamboo Racing team-mate Pepe Oriola and Leopard Racing’s Jean-Karl Vernay.
However of the four, Nash is the only one who will carry success ballast this weekend, with 30 kg of additional weight in his SEAT. Indeed Nash is the only driver in the entire field with success ballast, as the other two pace-setting drivers from the previous event, Roberto Colciago and Kevin Gleason, will not be taking part in this weekend’s races.
“The weight issue has obviously one that has to be considered, but put it this way, I’d rather have the 17-point lead I’ve got than an unburdened car and the challenge of a 17-points deficit to make up.
“I’m glad too that I’m driving for the Craft Bamboo Racing SEAT Lukoil team. Last year at Macau Oriola’s SEAT carried maximum ballast and showed very well both in qualifying and race trim to demonstrate that the team has the knowhow to keep even the heaviest car fully competitive.”
Nash finished by adding further praise for the continually developing TCR Series, where he is one of two Brits racing this weekend, the other being TCR Germany champion Josh Files (Editor’s note: Adam Morgan is taking part in the race, but not in TCR-spec machinery).
“I’m ready for the TCR finale and whatever Macau and my rivals might throw a me,” added Nash. “The TCR International Series is now I think the very best global touring car series. We’ve got some of the very best tin top drivers anywhere competing and it is no surprise that already that so many manufacturers have been encouraged to join in with more to come.
“I’m really proud to be leading the championship, especially so as the lone British driver in the field for most of the season and you can be sure that I’m travelling to the Far East with a clear mindset and determination to win the title.”