Team BMW’s Colin Turkington described his Thruxton weekend in the British Touring Car Championship as ‘a rescue mission’ after his worst score since Oulton Park.
With the Hampshire circuit not being one which has favoured the Northern Irishman over the years, Turkington went into the weekend knowing that the pressure would be on.
That turned out to be the case early in the weekend, as the four-time champion could only manage 15th in qualifying, almost nine tenths of a second off the pace.
He made progress in the opening race to finish in tenth, before following up with another tenth in race two as his push forward stalled.
In the final race, Turkington was drawn to start from second on the partially-reversed grid, and he went on to take the chequered flag in that position, having been passed by eventual winner Josh Cook before team-mate Stephen Jelley allowed him in front to ensure the best-possible points score from his weekend.
“It became a rescue mission this weekend following qualifying, but it was important to keep positive and aim for three top ten results,” said Turkington. “That’s easier said than done in this series.
“You can aim to score big in the reversed grid race but in reality never actually get there, so we did well to execute the plan!
“The combination of the abrasive track surface and the hard tyre leaves our window of performance quite slim. A minor change and you can end up fighting the car rather than improve it.
“It’s always been a challenge for us in the BMW but by race three the car was the best it’s been all weekend. We just hadn’t enough to challenge for the win, but we had the step forward in pace to keep the car on the podium.
“The third race was critical for my championship campaign. It felt like a lot was riding on getting that result.
“I’m really pleased to have secured those points and keep the lead, despite a very tough weekend.”
Turkington now has three weekends off racing before the BTCC resumes at Silverstone on 24 – 25 September.
“Everyone has a bump in the road in this championship, but we dug deep and ended the day with a good points haul.
“It’s been an intense period lately, but I’m in a good place and feeling positive.”