Despite missing out on the 2015 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship title by four points at Brands Hatch GP circuit last weekend, Jason Plato praised eventual champion Gordon Shedden after the Scot denied him from completing a remarkable turnaround.
Plato added a sixth win of his 2015 tally in the 30th and final race of the season at the Kent circuit, recovering from 23 points adrift of Honda Yuasa Racing‘s Shedden during Sunday’s trio of encounters to almost snatch a third title of his own.
Ultimately, a recovery drive from 19th by Shedden denied the Volkswagen CC driver, Plato left ruing several factors that cost him points during the season including a puncture at the same venue back in April’s season opener.
“Well, that’s just the way it is isn’t it?”, a gallant Plato told media including TCF afterwards, proud of his achievements having entered the winter season inexplicably without a drive.
“I’m very pleased with what we’ve managed to do with this team as it’s a brilliant outfit now. We are a force to be reckoned with.
“We didn’t win it this year, but as a matter of fact we could have and probably should have had other things happened.”
Plato pointed towards the times that BMR lost points in and out of their hands as the catalyst for losing out on the title, insisting that without a pair of punctures he could have been the man enjoying the greater celebrations.
The 2001 and 2010 champion added: “We had too many little bits of bad luck this year if I’m being honest. That’s what I’ll think about because without that puncture here [in April], we could have won it.
“You can say that Gordon had a s*it Snetterton, but we had two punctures that were out of our hands. That’s disappointing, but I’m pleased with my performances this year.
“I’m pleased with the engine and the performance of the team. We need to develop our motor, but as an outfit with me for my first proper year, I’m pleased.”
Despite having to settle for the runner-up spot in the championship for a third consecutive season, Plato praised BMR for their performances in 2015 and also went on to graciously congratulate his main championship rival, Shedden, for his own personal achievement.
“A thoroughly deserving champion. Full stop”, Plato commented on new champion, Shedden.
“I’ll not take anything away from him. Gordon has driven brilliantly this year, especially with maximum ballast where he’s rescued weekends.”
“We’ve got some brilliant number one mechanics, some great number two mechanics and , although the name is new, the team are very experienced.
“It’s a people game and you’ve got to put the right people in any business. That’s how it works – it’s not rocket science!”
On developments for the 2016 season, Plato was clear on improvement areas, concluding: “We need a bigger engine, so we’ll wait and see.”