Josh Cook believes he and BTC Racing did everything they could in their British Touring Car Championship title fight, with the 31-year-old finally dropping out of contention at Silverstone last weekend.
After qualifying his Honda in 12th on Saturday – the second-best civic racer and third-fastest of the M-Sport TOCA-engine cards – Cook kept his slim title chances alive in the opening two races of the day with points finishes in 13th and eighth.
Having been drawn to start the partially-reversed grid race three from pole position, Cook then finally dropped out of the title reckoning after taking the chequered flag in sixth – having been knocked out of the lead just two corners in by Ciceley Motorsport’s Adam Morgan.
Cook admitted that he knew his title hopes were effectively over before Silverstone, and continued to express frustration at his car’s lack of straight-line performance.
“It was always going to be a long shot – it wasn’t really realistic,” said Cook to TouringCars.Net. “I’m more annoyed about the pace we had this weekend.
“We’ve got a great chassis and we’ve done everything we can do but it’s been completely out of our control. That’s what annoys me more than being fired off in race three or not qualifying well.
“We’re racers, through and through as a team, and when we come to a race meeting, we need to be in with a chance of winning.
“If we’re not, we do everything in our power to change that. For the second half, or even two thirds of the year, it’s been us just chasing something that we can’t influence.”
Cook acknowledged that he is harbouring the same frustrations as earlier in the year, but said that continued work by the team behind the scenes had yet to solve the issue he has been facing.
“For qualifying, I had a new engine, I had a massive tow from Jason all the way down the back straight, deployed hybrid down the back straight and I’m still bottom of the speed trap by almost a mile an hour. What can we do about that?”
“We’ve done absolutely everything we can do. Yes, it seems like we rock up at the next meeting and we still complain about the same thing, but we are doing absolutely everything behind the scenes.
“We’ve done more on this car this year than we’ve done in any previous year at any team that I’ve ever been with.
“We’re here to win and we want to be the best and we want to be the fastest, and that’s what this whole team works towards.
“If that’s out of our control, because for whatever reason, that’s a hard pill to swallow for the whole team.
“Whatever happens we’ve got to walk away with our heads held high knowing that we’ve done everything we can do.”