BTCC 2011 Team-By-Team Preview: 888 Racing With Collins Contractors

No.14 James Nash – No.34 Tony Gilham
Vauxhall Vectra
S2000 chassis, NGTC engine

2011 should be a big step forward for 888. Fielding a stable two-car team for Nash and Gilham should give the team the stability it lacked after the revolving door or drivers and sponsorship than dominated 2010.

This change should, hopefully, give Nash a chance to keep the promise he showed in the brief and eventful 2009 outings in a Chevrolet Lacetti, and a switch to the turbocharged unit will give the team the speed that, according to Nash, they lacked last season.

Ever popular Gilham joins the team after campaigns in admittedly troubled campaigns in Porsches, bringing his unforgettable pink and green livery and fan-appeal (including the chance to win his car at the end of the year) to the Touring Car garages.

The pair of drivers, sharing Gilham's car for the day were well up the timesheets, one driver – Gilham suspects Nash – putting up the second best time of the day. The team still have a way to go to rekindle the magic that surrounded them when they ran the works Vauxhalls to multiple titles, but 2011 might see a return to regular points hauls and a genuine challenge in reverse grid races.

James Nash On…..The advantage of two-car team
We've got a test day next week and instead of me doing all the ground work we've got double the amount of work being so we cover so much more and I can go off on route and Tony can go another route and we can still end up in a better place. It's more stable and we can work smarter with it.”

Tony Gilham On…..His aims for the year
“To be a strong top ten contender is my first aim, and then push on from there. Next target is top six, next target is podium so we'll push as hard as we can, but that's where we're looking. We want to be strong. James is a good benchmark for me, obviously he's had a year in the car so that's where we're aiming for.”

Verdict: Stronger than 2010, Nash could pick up a reverse grid win.