Tag: Sam Tordoff

BTCC: Rob Collard completes WSR line-up

West Surrey Racing has confirmed that Rob Collard will complete its driver line-up in this year’s Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship.

The team has already added young race winner Sam Tordoff and triple World Touring Car Champion Andy Priaulx to its ranks and has now re-signed the experienced Collard for a sixth consecutive season.

Collard, who has taken eight race victories in his BTCC career to date – all with WSR, finished sixth in the overall championship last season and helped the squad win both the teams’ and independent teams’ titles.

The Hampshire-based driver has been part of the BMW 1 Series programme since its inception in early 2013 and has gone on to enjoy one victory and a further seven podiums in the all-conquering 125i M Sport WSR designed and built machine.

Collard brings with him continued support from the Duo Group and Hitachi Construction Equipment.

WSR commences its pre-season testing with two days of running at Thruxton next week (18/19 February) where its refined cars will come up against much of its tin-top opposition. All three drivers are expected to be in attendance with further test dates planned during February and March before the BTCC Season Launch takes place at Donington Park on 24th March.

The opening three rounds of the 30-race season will get underway at Brands Hatch on 5th April. Every race throughout the season will be screened live and exclusively on ITV4.

Rob Collard said: “I am delighted to be racing for WSR for the sixth consecutive season and it’ll be my eighth in total with the team in the BTCC. We have had some great memories together and I believe there are many more to come. I am looking forward to getting back behind the wheel during testing over the coming week as we prepare to defend our titles in 2015.”

Dick Bennetts, WSR Team Principal, said: “Rob has been a mainstay of WSR for a number of years and we’re extremely pleased to have him signed up for another season. It’s great to welcome the talents of both Andy Priaulx and Sam Tordoff into the team but we felt it was vital to have some continuity in our driving ranks. Rob’s speed and experience are there for all to see and he will, as ever, play a key role in helping WSR challenge for more titles.”

Read more at btcc.net

BTCC: Tordoff signs for WSR

Race winner Sam Tordoff has joined West Surrey Racing for the 2015 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship.

The 25-year-old joins the reigning and multiple championship winning team after two successful years with MG, where he scored two BTCC victories. Tordoff has also taken four pole positions in the series and a total of 12 podium finishes.

Prior to his involvement in the BTCC Tordoff experienced front-running campaigns in the Renault Clio Cup UK and Porsche Carrera Cup GB.

Now looking forward to his third season in Britain’s best and toughest championship, Tordoff will drive a WSR-built, developed and run BMW 125i M Sport in 2015.

The Yorkshire-based racer is the first of three pilots to be announced by the team as the squad will again run a trio of BMWs in the high level tin-top series.

“I am delighted to be joining WSR,” said Tordoff. “They’ve just won four different titles in 2014 – including Colin Turkington’s drivers’ championship – so I believe I am joining the best team on the grid.

“I’ve got to know some of the team already and the work ethic at WSR fits perfectly with mine. They’re an extremely professional outfit that plan meticulously to win, so I can’t wait to get started. I’ve had two good seasons in the BTCC but now is the time for me to mount a championship challenge and I feel I’m now at the best place to do exactly that.”

WSR Team Principal, Dick Bennetts, said: “We’ve watched Sam’s development closely over the last few years and he’s progressed extremely well in the BTCC.

“I have enjoyed working with emerging talents throughout my career and we believe Sam has the ability to become a champion in the future. Everyone in the team is delighted with his signing and we welcome him to West Surrey Racing, where we hope together we can enjoy great success.”

Read more at btcc.net

BTCC: Colin Turkington crowned champion

eBay Motors star takes his second drivers championship as MG claims manufacturer honours

eBay Motors driver Colin Turkington was crowned the 2014 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Champion after a quite pulsating final day of racing at Brands Hatch.  The Ulsterman came into the weekend with a relatively comfortable points margin, but had to overcome the challenge from MG’s Jason Plato – the most successful BTCC driver in history.  Plato laid down an immediate marker by claiming pole position ahead of his MG KX Clubcard Fuel Save team-mate Sam Tordoff, whilst Turkington could only manage fourth on the grid behind Honda Yuasa Racing’s Gordon Shedden.  An action packed opening race commenced with a huge multi-car accident, as well as providing three different leaders in the opening half lap.  Pole-sitter Plato was jumped off the line by Tordoff, who then immediately had the BMW of Turkington blasting around his outside as the pack roared into Paddock Hill Bend for the first time.  There was drama behind after a coming together between the Airwaves Racing Ford Focus of Fabrizio Giovanardi and Shedden’s Honda Civic Tourer sparked a sequence of incidents in the pack.  Shedden’s machine slid sideways across the track following the contact and was hit heavily by the unsighted Rob Austin.  Jack Goff’s VW was bumped from behind in the melee and briefly became airborne with both Dave Newsham and Alain Menu also involved.  Matt Neal’s Honda was also car collected in the incident, ending the triple-champion’s day as he was flown to hospital for a precautionary X-ray on his ribs.  When the dust eventually settled it was Plato leading from Tordoff, with Turkington in close pursuit. The MG duo held on for an impressive one-two but it wasn’t enough to deny 32-year-old Turkington from claiming his second BTCC title.Turkington’s eBay Motors squad was ready in the pitlane to welcome its man home, as the West Surrey Racing-run team also secured the Teams’ and both Independents’ championships.“I am over the moon,” said the new champion.  “I wanted this more than ever and I was prepared to do whatever it took to win the title.

“I suppose the main feeling is relief.  We were ready to do battle until race three so I really wasn’t expecting to clinch the title so early in the day.  I actually thought I was a point short when I crossed the line so I didn’t want to celebrate until I was absolutely sure.

“To be able to celebrate with the team and my family is a really proud moment.  Lewis [Colin’s son] wasn’t old enough to remember the first one and part of the reason to get back into the BTCC was to do it for him, so I’m delighted.”

Race two was all about MG KX Clubcard Fuel Save securing the Manufacturers’ Championship but the encounter wasn’t without incident.

Plato finished first on the road but was later penalised for his involvement in a race-ending shunt for Turkington.  The eBay Motors BMW led the way in the early running before contact from the MG behind sent Turkington spinning into retirement.

Airwaves Racing’s Mat Jackson took over the reins but his lead didn’t last long after the multiple race-winner spun it away of the exit of Hawthorns.  Plato baulked up while Jackson was having his moment, allowing the BMW of Rob Collard to nip through.

Changes for top spot were far from finished, however, after Morgan got past Plato before producing a stellar move by leader Collard at Paddock Hill Bend.  Plato made it through too as Collard’s soft compound tyres began to drop in performance.

Morgan then slid wide to seemingly hand victory to Plato before the latter’s post-race penalty gave the Mercedes driver a maiden success.  Incredibly it was also the first overall win for the German marque in the BTCC.

“It’s brilliant,” beamed Morgan. “We’ve been praying for a podium for so long, so to get a win at the last event of the year is just fantastic.”

Shedden produced a master class in treacherous conditions in the season finale, ending a challenging campaign on a high for Honda Yuasa Racing.

Tin-top rookie Jack Clarke scored an incredible second placed finish after seeing off a number of challengers throughout the contest.  The pole-sitter lost out to the fast-starting BMW of Nick Foster off the line but he retook the lead with a great move at Graham Hill Bend.

Shedden made light work of Foster and immediately set about attacking Clarke ahead of him. The 26-year-old held on well for a number of laps before the Scotsman slipped through on the exit of Hawthorns.

Jackson completed the podium, rounding off an excellent season for the multiple race-winner in which he completed all 30 encounters.  It was a hat-trick of accomplishments for Ford drivers as Dave Newsham also collected the Jack Sears Trophy for making up the most places of any Independent driver throughout the campaign.

It was all eyes on Turkington after the final chequered flag of the season, however, as he took to the podium in front of a huge crowd and collected the much coveted BTCC trophy for the second time in his career.

The glittering occasion rounded off a record breaking and hugely successful 2014 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship, which saw 31-cars take to the grid, including seven former champions.  Such has been the competitiveness of the burgeoning series that Adam Morgan today became the 11th different race winner in 2014 – a year that has provided more victors than in any other in the history of this illustrious championship.

So many drivers have made the top step of the podium during the season, but of course there can only be one champion, and that richly deserved accolade goes to eBay Motors star Colin Turkington.

Read more on btcc.net

 

BTCC : MG Grabs The Manufacturer Lead

For the first time since the Donington Park event in 2013, MG/Triple Eight have taken the lead in the Manufacturer/Constructor standings ahead of Honda Team Dynamics.

Tordoff_071-720x400

It has been an incredibly close battle between the four manufacturer-backed cars so far this year, and now MG have moved ahead by just a single point.

With Honda having taken the past four consecutive Manufacturer’s titles, MG drivers Jason Plato and Sam Tordoff are on a mission in this, the third year of the MG6 racer, to snatch the crown from the new-for-2014 Honda Civic Tourers. The hatchback Civic model is a proven package, but with the switch to the larger Tourer this year there have been some new challenges for Team Dynamics to overcome. It didn’t take long, however, for the car to take its first podium in the hands of Matt Neal in the very first race of the year at Brands Hatch. Podiums soon became wins, as Shedden triumphed in the final race of the day at Donington Park, but the Pershore–based squad hasn’t had things entirely its own way.

Two podiums for Plato at Brands were followed up by a dominant display by Triple Eight three weeks later at Donington. A front-row lockout for Plato and Tordoff followed by 1-2s in both races was mightily impressive, but a strong race three for Honda just kept the Japanese marque in front.

With both Thruxton and Oulton Park balanced between the two works teams, Honda held a slender advantage coming into the BTCC’s sole trip to north Yorkshire. The MG pair had been fast at Croft in 2013 and were confident ahead of the weekend, and while they didn’t quite get the results anticipated, it was still enough to move them ahead in the race for manufacturer honours.

Read More