Colin Turkington admitted that a double win for Team BMW was a pleasant surprise after the German marque reached 100 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship wins last weekend at Thruxton.
Double BTCC champion Turkington grabbed his second win in as many meetings in the third race of the day in Hampshire, leading from the front after being drawn on pole position following results of seventh and sixth.
The Northern Irishman also helped BMW reach a personal milestone in the series, backing up Rob Collard‘s race two win to bring the manufacturer’s win tally to 100.
Turkington was left feeling nostalgic from the achievement, saying “I’m incredibly proud to take the 100th BTCC win for BMW; a company with such an incredible record of success in touring car racing, and doubly so because I grew up watching Jo Winkelhock and Steve Soper and wishing one day I could do the same as them.
“The BMW 125i M Sport is a fantastic car at the moment and we’ve really got it in the window.”
Victory was not something that Turkington had counted on prior to Sunday however, the BMW outfit struggling to find the optimum balance around the high-speed circuit to challenge their Honda and Toyota rivals initially.
“We didn’t have the fastest car today at what isn’t traditionally a rear-wheel-drive circuit, but we definitely worked the hardest to make sure we had enough pace when it counted”, he added. “Without the reversed-grid pole, I’m not sure we could have won today, but we’ve made it work for us and it’s a very special day for the whole team.
“I wasn’t that confident before the race because we had been chasing the set-up all day, but the guys never let up which moved the car in a new direction – and the pace was there for all to see.
“Thruxton has always been a challenge for us – it’s probably the circuit where we’ve won the least – so to take two victories here is fantastic.”
West Surrey Racing Team Principal Dick Bennetts added his personal praise for BMW on their partnership with the team, one that started back in 2007 with Turkington also a key part.
“We are immensely proud to have scored BMW’s 100th win in the British Touring Car Championship”, he said. “We’ve run BMWs since 2007 and they’ve been a fantastic partner throughout that time.
“I think the race being stopped and declared early helped us, because I’m not sure what would have happened if it had gone the full distance. We were fortunate to have Colin drawn on pole for Race Three, but he made the most of it and drove beautifully.”
Turkington’s second win of 2017 moved him up to third in the championship and 20 points adrift of Tom Ingram, while Collard’s first of the year put him a spot behind his team-mate in fourth.
Photo: BTCC Media
First Manufacturer Title – 1991 (Will Hoy)
First WSR Win – 2007 (Turkington, Croft)
First Drivers’ Title With WSR – 2009 (Turkington)
First NGTC BMW Win – 2013 (Turkington, Donington)
Second Drivers’ Title With WSR – 2014 (Turkington)
First WSR/BMW Win As Manufacturer Outfit – 2017 (Jordan, Brands Hatch)
BMW’s 100th Win – 2017 (Turkington, Thruxton)