Article date: 24 July 2006
- Round 6 - Donington Park - Preview
The second half of the 2006 Dunlop MSA British Touring CarChampionship gets underway this coming weekend as Team RAC head toDonington Park (Derbyshire) for races 16, 17 and 18 of the 30-racechampionship.
This will be Team RAC's first visit to the circuit since itunderwent a £5 million redevelopment and provides a challenge toeven the most experienced drivers with its fast flowing trackproviding bountiful overtaking opportunities and excitingracing.
Team RAC's Colin Turkington kept the pressure on at the top ofthe championship table at Croft last time out with fourth, thirdand second place finishes. A reduction of the 37-point deficit onchampionship leader Matt Neal will be Colin's focus this weekendwhilst also keeping a close eye on rival Jason Plato, who is hot onhis heels.
Last year Donington Park played host to the opening round of the2005 BTCC with Colin claiming pole position. Colin said: "Repeatingthat performance won't be easy as there are a lot of quick driversin quick cars amongst the field. I think my qualifying pace will begood as I've been pretty consistent all season. I would say thatDonington is my favourite circuit so I'll be giving an extra bigpush to claim pole. We're in the second half of the season now so Ireally have to start taking some points away from Matt (Neal)."
With a podium finish for Rob Collard at the corresponding BTCCfixture last year, he will be looking to repeat that performance asgets behind the wheel of the Team RAC car. Rob's qualifying sessionon Saturday will be all the more important as he is forced to takea six place grid penalty, issued following the racing incident withVauxhall's Fabrizio Giovanardi at Croft.
Rob said: "I'm very much looking forward to Donington as thefast flowing layout combined with the excellent handling of theTeam RAC car, I believe, will gives us the edge. It's frustratingto have picked up the penalty last time out at Croft but it's asituation I have to accept and deal with. It'll be even moreimportant to improve on our qualifying performance and aim for atop three slot. This way the penalty won't hurt so much."
Shaun Meadows, marketing director, said: "Anticipation forDonington is building and hopes are high, things are looking goodfor the team. This coupled with the large RAC support on the daycould be a winning combination. The track is local to a number ofRAC offices and we have invited over 1,200 staff and their familiesto attend and be part of the team. It promises to be a great dayfor all."
Team RAC principal Dick Bennetts added: "Qualifying will proveall the more important for us this weekend. We've had some goodresults at this circuit previously so we know that the car is morethan capable of success. If we can qualify well on Saturday then Ithink there's every chance of being on the podium. There will alsobe additional trackside support from RAC staff, which will no doubtspur on the team and drivers."
The sixth BTCC round at Donington Park will be transmitted onITV on Sunday 30 July starting at 15:00hrs. The programme willinclude highlights from race one and two with race three beingshown live in its entirety. Satellite viewers can watch all threeraces live on Motors TV commencing at 11:10hrs. Further informationon programme replays can be found at www.teamrac.com.
Note to editors:
- This weekend Rob Collard's MG ZS will be displaying a screenheader supported by RAC Rescue.
- Copyright free images for editorial purposes are available atwww.teamrac.com
- To arrange an interview with a member of Team RAC, pleasecontact Sarah Owen on 07793 633153.
- With around seven million members, RAC is one of the UK''smost progressive motoring organizations, providing services forboth private and business motorists. Whether it''s roadsideassistance, windscreen repair and replacement, learning to drive,vehicle inspections and checks, legal and financial services orup-to-the-minute traffic and travel information - RAC is able tomeet motorists'' needs. RAC incorporates BSM, RAC AutoWindscreens, RAC Direct Insurance and HPI.
- Aviva bought RAC last year. The acquisition brings togetherRAC''s powerful brand and customer base with the expertise andleading 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 ofaround 14 per cent.About Aviva
- Aviva is the world''s sixth-largest insurance group and thebiggest in the UK. It is one of the leading providers of life andpensions products in Europe and has substantial businesseselsewhere around the world. Its main activities are long-termsavings, fund management and general insurance. It has premiumincome and investment sales of £33 billion and £291 billion ofassets under management. The group has 60,000 employees serving 30million customers worldwide.