Article date: 8 June 2009
Yorkshire’s cricketers were bowled over when Team RAC driver Colin Turkington paid a visit to Headingley ahead of the Croft round of the HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship on Sunday (14 June).
Turkington met Yorkshire’s Andrew Gale and Ajmal Shahzad as he looks to continue his Championship challenge in the 2009 BTCC season.
The 27-year-old Northern Irishman lies in second place in the overall standings after the first four rounds (12 races) of the season during which time he has recorded three victories and a host of podium finishes.
Turkington took Team RAC’s BMW 320si to the Headingley Ground, where the Yorkshire players were facing Sussex in Division 1 of the LV County Championship.
Current Independent’s Champion Turkington said: “It was a great experience to meet Andrew and Ajmal. They are definitely sporting role models and speaking to them is certainly inspiring ahead of the weekend’s racing.
“On the back of our performance last week we should have a really good chance at Croft. Team RAC have a really good history here and the track should suit the BMW, although it’s never easy carrying second place ballast!
"If the weather’s as hot as at Oulton Park it will be a bonus, but we’ve got good pace and hopefully the hard work from everyone involved will pay off again.”
Yorkshire batsman Andrew Gale said: “It was fantastic to meet Colin and take a closer look at the Team RAC car. It was very interesting to hear about the preparation and demands involved in being a racing driver. Unfortunately we’re playing on Sunday so won’t be able see him in action this weekend, but we all wish him the best of luck, and I’m sure fans going along are in for a cracking day of racing.”
Talking about Team RAC’s prospects for this weekend, Turkington’s team-mate, Stephen Jelley said: “Croft should be a very strong meeting for Team RAC, even more so than Oulton Park. Personally, I’ve been working very hard and hopefully Croft will bring that bit of luck that has deserted me recently.
“Croft provides a great chance for me to hit my first podium which is exactly what I need to put the last two meetings behind me and get the point’s ball rolling again.”
WSR Team Principal Dick Bennetts said: “Everyone at WSR is working extremely hard as always in preparation for Croft. The engineers have been studying the Croft set-ups from the last two years to give us a basis for a good start set-up this time around.
“Croft has been good to us in the past and there is a good atmosphere in the Team RAC camp following the display at Oulton Park. A good haul of points is definitely the target.”
Turkington has amassed 109 championship points after the first four rounds, while team-mate Stephen Jelley has 35 points. Team RAC are currently second in the BTCC Team Championship with 142 points.
For further information please contact:
Telephone: 0207 908 6459
Notes to editors:
The British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) was formed in 1958 and is Britain’s most popular motor racing spectacle. Its race season comprises ten events at top circuits across the UK. It is contested by professional racing drivers in competition versions of every day road cars, giving it tremendous public appeal. Some 325,000 watch the BTCC trackside each year. www.btcc.net
About RAC – The Driving People
With around seven million members, RAC is one of the UK's most progressive motoring organisations, providing services for both private and business motorists. Whether it's roadside assistance, vehicle inspections and checks, legal services or up-to-the-minute traffic and travel information - RAC is able to meet motorists’ needs. RAC incorporates RAC Insurance.
RAC is committed to providing the very highest levels of service to its members and has been ranked first for customer service by JD Power and Associates’ UK Roadside Assistance Study for the last three years.
RAC is part of Aviva, the world’s fifth largest insurance group which operates in 28 countries.
RAC’s news releases and a selection of images are available from the internet press centre at www.racnews.co.uk.
HiQ (part of Goodyear Dunlop) became the BTCC's new title sponsor in 2008 in a new three-year agreement. It provides a fast-fit car care service at its 150 centres across the UK. In the next two years, that number will rise to 250 as HiQ embarks on revolutionising the fast-fit industry. It has already taken the lead by offering a unique online service www.hiqonline.co.uk for motorists to buy tyres and arrange a fitting appointment.