Colin Turkington: ‘We achieved the maximum’ in qualifying

Colin Turkington was pleased to put his BMW on the second row of the grid for the opening British Touring Car Championship race at Croft on Sunday, believing he got the maximum out of his car in qualifying.

Turkington had been fastest of all for much of the twice-interrupted qualifying session on Saturday, but in the end the Team BMW driver was pipped by both Aiden Moffat and Jake Hill in the closing minutes of the session.

The Northern Irishman ended up with third, just over a tenth of a second off pole, a position which he is pleased with going into the first race in North Yorkshire.

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“It’s a very good place to start from – I’d rather be here,” said Turkington. “Dick [Bennetts, Team Principal] said [go for] P1 or P3, don’t go P2!

“I held the top spot for a while, but I got as much out of the car as I could on both runs and my fastest time was on the first run.

“We made a change to try and improve it, and the car was very much the same on the second run and I did the same lap time so I think I achieved as much as I could. We’re near the sharp end and I gave myself a good chance for tomorrow.”

Turkington explained why starting third could be better than second for the start of the race on Sunday.

“Turn 1 is quite narrow, it’s very difficult to get two cars around there so it’s very easy to get hung out on the outside, so P3 is a bit safer. Dick will still probably tell you he’s happy with P2!

“We had a challenging day where we saved all our new tyres for qualifying and delivered the goods, but it’s never easy because in free practice you’re doing all of your fine tuning on slightly used rubber.

“You hope you’re heading in the right direction, so it’s nice to confirm that once we got fresh tyres on. I’m very happy for Team BMW.

“I need to keep scoring really good points and out-score Ash [Sutton]. We still have 12 races to go, four events, so although we’re into Autumn now, there’s still a lot of points there.

“I tend not to be too greedy at this stage and just chip away at it. We know nobody ever walks away with this championship, so I’ll just keep trying to collect points.”

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