Colin Turkington’s championship hopes were delivered a severe blow in qualifying at Brands Hatch yesterday. The two-time champion qualified down in 17th after an engine misfire in his West Surrey Racing BMW. Championship leader Ash Sutton qualified in third in his Subaru.
Turkington spent half the session in the pits as the team worked frantically to resolve his technical issue, with the Northern Irishman able to set a few laps at the end of qualifying to secure 17th on the grid.
“Obviously it was a very difficult session,” said Turkington. “First with Rob (Collard) unfortunately not making it out, and then I had this issue from the first lap. We cured the problem, but it left me with very little opportunity to set a representative lap, but the positive is I’m 17th instead of 32nd.
“We just have to reset. The points are dished out tomorrow, not today. It’s always difficult to make progress through the pack, but we’ll keep trying. It’s far from over.”
Turkington is resilient if nothing else. He has been through pressure in the championship before. He carries less success ballast than Sutton going into race 1 of the weekend, so should be in a position to gain ground. Team strategy will be all important, however with Collard missing, the cards are stacked against Turkington.
Sutton has already complimented teammate Jason Plato for assisting him in qualifying. Sutton posted “Well that wasn’t expected, P3 in the final qualifying session of 2017! Proper job from JP (Jason Plato), thanks for dragging me round!”.
With the final three rounds being held in the Brands Hatch GP circuit today, anything can happen. Here’s hoping the drama goes down to the final race.