Article date: 2 September 2007
Colin Turkington secured two independents wins for Team RAC at the ninth round of the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship at Knockhill today (2 September).
After races 25, 26 and 27 Colin Turkington lies fifth in the drivers championship with 171 points, whilst Tom Onslow-Cole is in 10th with 107 points. Jason Plato (SEAT Sport UK) leads with 265 points.
Colin Turkington began the first race of the day from second place on the grid. Turkington started positively but was unable to move ahead of SEAT's Darren Turner. Gordon Shedden began putting pressure on the Turkington in the second lap and in lap three Shedden passed him.
Turkington remained in third place for the majority of the race until Shedden retired after sustaining a puncture during an incident with Darren Turner.
Turkington went on to finish in second place, securing an independents win for Team RAC.
Tom Onslow-Cole started from eighth place on the grid. A positive start saw him move up to sixth place early in the race. In lap nine he moved in front of Jason Plato to go up to fifth place and began to put pressure on Fabrizio Giovanardi.
Onslow-Cole remained in fifth place and drove extremely well to hold off the championship leader as he tried to regain his place. However on lap 23 an incident with Giovanardi resulted in Onslow-Cole being disqualified from the race.
Tom Onslow-Cole commented: "It is frustrating that I was disqualified from the race as I did not deliberately make contact with Giovanardi. Unfortunately my onboard camera was not working so I was unable to prove that I was not at fault. However I really enjoyed the race and was very happy with my performance and that of the car."
Colin Turkington began race two from second place on the grid. Due to the well spaced grid positions at Knockhill Turkington was unable to use the benefit of the BMW's rear-wheel drive to take the lead. He settled instead for second place, keeping in mind the Independents Championship. Inspite of the extra weight on his car Turkington was quicker than in race one and was able to remain in second place for the duration of the race, securing a second Independents win for Team RAC.
After his disqualification from race one Tom Onslow-Cole was forced to start the race from 17th place with a weight ballast of 18kgs. He experienced some difficulty with the clutch but was able to gain a few places to finish the race in 12th place.
Colin Turkington said: "It was a great result, two seconds and valuable points in the Independents championship, which is what I'm chasing now, so I'm delighted with my performance. We were quite a bit quicker in the second race even with the extra weight. Team RAC have done a great job on the car and it has performed extremely well all weekend."
Turkington began the final race of the day from seventh place and Onslow-Cole from 12th.
Turkington moved up to sixth place in lap nine when he passed Adam Jones and went on to finish in the race in sixth. Onslow-Cole moved up to 10th place when Tom Chilton pulled into the pits towards the end of the race.
The race was won by Gordon Shedden (Team Halfords).
Dick Bennetts, WSR Team Principal, said: "Colin drove brilliantly this weekend. He did a storming lap in qualifying yesterday and got two strong seconds today. His performance has put us just one point behind Matt Neal in the driver standings and only three points behind Jordan in the Independents so it's all on for Thruxton."
Team RAC today secured the Independents Team Championship with 325 points, and sit fourth in the Overall Teams Championship with 260 points.
The BTCC action now moves to Thruxton on Sunday 14 October.
RAC were able to unveil the latest stage of their "RAC to the rescue" campaign, which provides benefits to enhance the race day experience of fans at all 10 rounds of the season.
RAC came to the rescue of fans by offering them the chance to win tickets to Knockhill including "first class" travel to the circuit.
Alastair Pegg, RAC director of marketing, said: "It was another action packed day in the British Touring Car Championship and was fantastic to see Turkington get two Independents wins for Team RAC. We were happy to give fans the opportunity to travel up to Scotland in style to watch the action.
"RAC have many exciting initiatives planned for the 10 rounds in 2007 so supporters should log onto teamrac.co.uk, look out in the media and at the rounds themselves during the season for details of our activity and how they can take part."
For further information please contact:
Lexis Sport - 07966 077572 / 0207 908 6488
Notes to editors:
The championship is firmly established not only as one of Britain's most popular form of motor racing but also as one of the UK's top sporting attractions. Over the past decade, action-packed BTCC race meetings have repeatedly drawn crowds on a par with Premiership football matches and Test Match cricket, with over 200,000 loyal spectators and over 20 million terrestrial television viewers.
RAC is one of the UK's most progressive motoring organisations and a provider for both private and business motorists. Whether it's roadside assistance, windscreen repair and replacement, learning to drive, vehicle inspections, legal and financial services or up-to-the-minute traffic and travel information - RAC is able to meet motorists' needs.
Aviva bought RAC in May 2005. The acquisition brings together RAC's powerful brand and customer base with the expertise and leading position in motor insurance of Norwich Union Insurance (part of Aviva). Norwich Union is the UK's largest insurer, insuring one in seven motor vehicles and with a market share of around 15%.