Dave Newsham cut a very enthusiastic figure following the latest batch of testing with his new AmD Tuning squad, and feels that the podium is reachable in their 2014 British Touring Car Championship season.
Newsham will switch from a Speedworks Toyota Avensis to a Ford Focus for his fourth BTCC campaign, AmD venturing into new territory also with a step up to NGTC machinery, having purchased a Focus previously raced by Motorbase Performance to replace their S2000 Volkswagen Golf.
Inverness driver Newsham said: “I am so excited about this season, the grid has swelled to capacity, and with seven BTCC Champions, an F3 Champion, and many support formula Champions on track, this is without doubt the most competitive BTCC season in decades, if not ever!
“I managed to top the time sheets at Media day in 2012. I don’t expect to be doing that again, but more mileage in the car will certainly help.”
Newsham, a former winner on two occassions in the BTCC when racing a Vauxhall Vectra for ES Racing in the 2012 season, has his sights set at visiting the podium during 2014, and feels that fighting for wins is a distinct possibility.
“Far from being overawed by this, it just fires me up even more. Our aim is still to score podium finishes, and I will still be gunning for wins.
“We are a small team, but we have a great car that I am comfortable with, the team are working well, and we are feeling confident we can mix it with the best.”
Team boss Shaum Hollamby echoed his new charge’s optimism for the new season, and believes that Newsham is one of ‘at least 25 drivers’ that feel they will have the potential to win a race this season.
Hollamby told btcc.net: “It’s got to say it’s the best motor racing grid of any series. The depth of talent is a huge – even scoring a point is going to be a challenge for anyone.
“I think 25 drivers will believe they can win races, including us if we get everything right. It’s incredible to have the champions and names involved in the series, plus of course the young drivers coming through. We can’t all win of course, but if it was easy then everyone would be doing it.”