Tom Chilton is hoping to be able to keep his championship alight in this weekend’s British Touring Car Championship races at Silverstone, with the Motorbase driver facing the prospect of having to close down a 65-point deficit.
Fresh from a victory in the last race at Knockhill, Chilton knows that he needs more victories in Northamptonshire this weekend as he battles to keep a slim title chance alive.
And although Chilton has won at Silverstone five times in the past – more than at any other circuit – he needs points leader Colin Turkington to have three non-scores, with Chilton winning all three races, just to even have a chance of drawing close to level for the season finale.
Despite that, Chilton is still bullish ahead of the meeting, and openly talks of his hopes to keep that prospect alive for a few more weeks.
“The last time I was at Silverstone in a Ford Focus I won, very much like Knockhill,” said Chilton. “After taking the win last time at Knockhill I’m hoping that follows through this weekend and we make the top step again.
“I really need to get another win in the bag to keep my championship alight for the last round.”
Chilton pointed to the close nature of the BTCC field as a reason to keep up his pace early in the weekend, as last time out he was only able to qualify his Ford Focus in the mid-pack.
“It’s so close around there, last year there was just eight tenths of a second from pole to 32nd which is the closest I’ve ever known in the BTCC.
“I do think the success ballast will really hurt us in qualifying though. Even if it’s only three tenths of a second off, that could mean 15 cars on the grid.
“If we can get into the top ten in qualifying I’ll be very happy and we can try and work our way through and make the reverse grid work for us again.
“At Knockhill we went from [15th in qualifying] to first in race three, which shows that anything is possible in the BTCC.”