Jack Goff was delighted to come away with a podium finish during his debut Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship weekend with West Surrey Racing at Brands Hatch.
The former Team HARD and Triple Eight driver recovered a sluggish start in a rain-affected qualifying to begin Sunday’s action eighth on the grid, grabbing results of 10th, eighth and third a day later and coming within 0.449s of victory in a three-car final race showdown.
“It’s a nice way to end the weekend”, Goff enthused to The Checkered Flag after a visit to the rostrum.
“For my first weekend in rear-wheel drive and to come away with a podium – that’s pretty good really to be honest. We had three top 10 finishes as well so, overall, not a bad weekend.”
WSR’s new recruit pursued race three winner Adam Morgan in the tow of team-mate Sam Tordoff until the flag, admitting that the chase of the Mercedes man displayed early signs of teamwork between the BMW drivers.
“I said to my engineer on the radio ‘tell Sam not to try and defend’, because I wasn’t going to try and overtake him in the first few laps”, admitted the former Renault UK Clio Cup champion.
“Our plan was quite clear. We had the medium tyre on, the BMW is better on its tyres and Adam was on the softs.
“We planned to try and catch him up together and pull away from P4. It happened, but not quite quickly enough. Another three or four laps, maybe he would have made a mistake and we could have got past.
“It is very difficult round here to overtake.”
Goff’s primary area for improvement remains adaptation to the rear-wheel drive BMW 125i, already seeing the additional perks, having driven only with the opposing configuration in BTCC previously.
“For the first weekend, we couldn’t really ask for too much more than that. I’m still getting used to rear-wheel drive, but it’s good.
“We’re the ones on the attack now”, Goff said of the perks of BMW’s tyre performance. “The race comes to you instead.”
“I’m used to having to hold on and fight for my life to get away from these BMWs, so to be now in one makes a lot of difference.”
Goff lies sixth in the Drivers’ Championship heading into the second meeting of the season at Donington Park on 16/17 April, just 11 points adrift of Honda’s Matt Neal who heads the way.