Engine problems limited Sam Tordoff to 13th place in the first Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship race at Croft, a result he felt he was lucky to achieve.
The West Surrey Racing driver will start race two of the day in North Yorkshire with a new engine in his BMW 125i, after falling from fifth on the grid to 13th due to issues with the power plant in race one.
“We’re going to have an engine change for race two”, Tordoff told The Checkered Flag afterwards. “That’s why we had to stop after the race.”
Tordoff’s race began with drama also after he was forced to take avoiding action from the turn one incident between Colin Turkington and Daniel Lloyd, dropping to 10th by the end of lap one.
On the incident, Tordoff added: “I just went wide trying to avoid it. The problem was that I got such a good start that I was on the outside in no man’s land, then I tried to go around the outside with Dan – I don’t know who’s fault it was there.”
The BMW driver stated that the subsequent trip through the gravel may have been a catalyst to engine issues he encountered later in the race, saying: “That could have been the start of our engine problems.
“We could have got some debris or gravel in the radiators. It seemed fine during the first half of the race, but then for the last eight laps, all the temperatures went through the roof. I think the only thing that saved me was the three-lap safety car at the end.”
The Leeds racer believes that he is in good shape to complete a comeback from his initial problems however, now level on points at the top of the Drivers’ Championship with Honda’s Matt Neal.
Tordoff started the opening race on the new harder tyre compound in the first race, saying: “The deg was good, but we’ve got it out of the way now. We still scored some points in that race when, in reality, we should have had a DNF if the engine had gone bang.
“With a new engine in it and a normal tyre on the car I think we’ll be fine”, Tordoff said ahead of race two. “We should get back into the top 10 and be good for the reverse grid race.”