A stunning weekend at Rockingham for Andrew Jordan which netted two wins saw the Pirtek Racing man move into the box seat for the 2013 British Touring Car Championship, but he inists that he cannot get carried away with two rounds remaining.
The reigning Independent champion had a weekend to remember at the Northamptonshire circuit, claiming his fifth and sixth wins of the season in rounds 22 and 24 of the season to suddenly open up a 30-point championship lead over Gordon Shedden and become the firm favourite for the 2013 title with two rounds remaining.
Speaking to thecheckeredflag.co.uk after an important weekend, Jordan said: “The car was so good. We didn’t quite get it right for race two, which I was a bit down in the dumps about, but it worked out a treat for us in race three. A first ever wet win, and the first time we have done two wins in one day, is so good. I am really happy.”
Jordan started his weekend off in fine style with a breathtaking start from fourth on the grid in race one to hang on around the outside of the trio of cars ahead of him and take the lead into Deene hairpin for the first time, a lead which he would ultimately never surrender.
Commenting on the brave move, Jordan added: “I knew that’s where the grip was. We are one of the only ones who do track walks; there is such a difference on some of these circuits and I knew grip was there on the banking.
“I got a good restart and then it started to dry. The tyres were going off and you get quite a bit of understeer, so it was just about managing that to make sure I had some tyres left at the end.”
The Pirtek Racing man slipped back in race two to 10th place, recovering to eighth place after pre-race changes backfired, saying: “We thought it was going to rain again for race two, so we didn’t stiffen the car completely up to a complete dry setup. That hurt, and the car wasn’t great from the get-go.”
The sluggish second encounter ironically set up a calm victory from pole position in the reverse-grid race, Jordan extending his newly-acquired championship lead having started the weekend six points behind former championship leader Matt Neal, who conversely had a meeting to forget.
The Honda Yuasa Racing driver came away with a 14th and seventh place his best result after a spin in race one and retirement following an off in the second encounter, dropping to fourth in the points behind team-mate Shedden and eBay Motors‘ Colin Turkington.
Jordan is fully aware that the fate of the championship now lies in his hands, and is determined to keep his consistent form continuing into the final six races of the season at Silverstone and Brands Hatch.
“It was unfortunate for Matt [Neal], who had a bad day, but there are still six races to go”, cautioned Jordan.
“I have believed from the start of the year that I can do it. There are a lot of things that can interfere with it – reliability, or a bit of bad luck. Anything can happen, but it is looking good at the minute.”
Jordan concluded that the long straights at Silverstone next time out will make round nine a survival mission, saying: “I’ve had a podium at every race, and I’ll be surprised if that continues at Silverstone. But we are racing the Hondas mainly, so if we can just be competitive compared to them, we should be ok. Then Brands Grand Prix I think we’ll be really good at.”
His father, Mike Jordan, added: “It’s those sort of weekends that you need to win championships. When you’re at the front you need to still be able to do the business, and he did just that.”
The situation with two rounds to go (After round 8/10):
01) Andrew Jordan (Pirtek Racing) – 338 points
02) Gordon Shedden (Honda Yuasa) – 308 points
03) Colin Turkington (eBay Motors) – 305 points
04) Matt Neal (Honda Yuasa) – 304 points
05) Jason Plato (MG KX Momentum Racing) – 276 points