Martin Depper said that he is targeting a ‘minimum top 10’ finish with Motorbase Performance in the 2017 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship.
The 48-year-old will enter his fifth season in the BTCC after stints with Forster Motorsport and Eurotech Racing, switching from the latter to Motorbase after scoring a best result of fifth place last year at Thruxton.
Speaking at the Autosport International Show on his switch to the Shredded Wheat-backed Ford Focus ST squad, Depper said that he felt he required a change of environment to achieve consistency and stronger results.
“I thought ‘it’s time for a bit of a change now'”, Depper told The Checkered Flag at the NEC Arena in Birmingham. “Motorbase know what they’re doing and are keen to impress so I think a lot of great things are going to come together.
“I was looking forward to last year and the pace was there early on, as you saw. What was disappointing was where that pace disappeared to.”
Depper joins rookie Luke Davenport and the experienced Mat Jackson at David Bartrum‘s squad for 2017, a team boss that the 2008 Mini Challenge champion looks forward to working with.
“We’ll require a minimum top-10 finish”, Depper said of his personal targets in 2017. “For me, as I’ve always said, podiums and top-five finishes are what I want and where this car should consistently be.
“I think the beauty of Motorbase is that David Bartrum is going to be a proper team boss. When things are not right, we’ll get the kick up he backside we should. It’ll help my racing.
“As drivers, you can get your heads stuck in reasons such as whys and whens, but we’ll just get on with it which will be a really valuable addition to my racing.”
Depper has already sampled the Focus at Brands Hatch, an outing which he was very encouraged by when sharing the Kent circuit with familiar opposition in November.
“Motorbase wanted to look at me, so we went testing at their local circuit”, added Depper. “The conditions were atrocious though; wet, damp and greasy.
“However, I just got in the car and didn’t even worry myself about those conditions. I just drove around getting faster. The added bonus was that my old team-mate Andrew Jordan was out there and I matched him, so I was impressed with my pace and so was the team.”