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2013 British Touring Car Championship season


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#1 midgrid

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 22:05

With today's very welcome news that 2009 champion Colin Turkington is returning to the BTCC fold with WSR, I think it's the ideal opportunity to create a thread for the 2013 season.

Calendar
1. Brands Hatch Indy - March 31
2. Donington Park - April 21
3. Thruxton - May 5
4. Oulton Park - June 9
5. Croft - June 23
6. Snetterton- August 4
7. Knockhill - August 25
8. Rockingham - September 15
9. Silverstone - September 29
10. Brands Hatch GP - October 13

Teams and drivers
Reigning champion Gordon Shedden and triple champion Matt Neal remain at Team Dynamics (aka Honda Yuasa Racing Team), which runs works NGTC Honda Civics. Dynamics customer Pirtek Racing also retains its Hondas for Jeff Smith and Andrew Jordan.

Neal's nemesis, Jason Plato, remains with the Triple Eight run works MG team, racing an NGTC MG6 GT against a yet-to-be confirmed team-mate. The much-maligned Andy Neate has departed the outfit, and will drive an NGTC Chevrolet Cruze entered by his own team.

AmD will run a new NGTC Vauxhall Astra alongside its established S2000 VW Golf; drivers have yet to be confirmed. Another team to expand is Tony Gilham's Team HARD: the boss's drive has yet to be confirmed, but he will field reigning Clio champion Jack Goff and single-seater convert James Cole in NGTC Vauxhall Insignias, and Tom Onslow-Cole and American Robb Holland in all-new NGTC Volkswagen CCs.

Another team to début new machinery is West Surrey Racing (aka eBay Motors), which, whilst maintaining its relationship with BMW, will switch to the NGTC BMW 125i for the trio of Rob Collard, Nick Foster, and the returning Colin Turkington. Motorbase Performance (Redstone), on the other hand, will develop the NGTC modeal of the Ford Focus that it introduced last year for Mat Jackson, who is again partnered by Árón Smith.

After an eventful rookie season with Speedworks, Adam Morgan moves to his family-run team, Ciceley Racing, for his second season of racing an NGTC Toyota Avensis. Fellow Toyota man Frank Wrathall remains with Dynojet. Speedworks also remains with Toyota, and will run ES Racing refugee Dave Newsham and another driver.

Rob Austin Racing, now competing under the wixracing.com name, will also return with its NGTC Audi A4s for owner-driver Rob Austin and Will Bratt, who is taking part in his first full BTCC season. Another rookie is Joe Girling, who will drive an S2000 Chevy Cruze for Tech-Speed Motorsport. Daniel Welch will also continue to campaign his self-entered Proton Persona, and Thorney Motorsport plans to enter two Insignias after a disastrous first season last year.

(This is all subject to change!)

Rule changes
Aside from some detail changes in how the boost levels for each car-engine combination are calculated, the main development is that the balance of performance has been further weighted in favour of the newer NGTC-specification cars, which have been given greater power than before relative to the S2000 cars. Thus only three S2000 cars have been entered so far, but they will be eligible for the newly-created Jack Sears Trophy.

Television
The BTCC and its support races (which include a return of British Formula Ford) will, as usual, receive extensive live coverage on ITV4.

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#2 Risil

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 22:15

Can we have a list of which companies the pay drivers are managing directors of please? ;)

#3 BullHead

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 22:26

:up: Welcome back Colin Turkington. Hope the NGTC BMWs get off without too many glitches.

#4 PayasYouRace

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 22:47

Good to have Colin back. It's always nice to have another champion on the grid.

#5 billm99uk

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Posted 19 January 2013 - 14:18

Shaping up nicely, though I don't really like the "class structure" thing for S2000 cars. Either they should be able to fight for a win or it should be all NGTC. Though I suppose then it's a question of whether you'd get the 20+ cars to put on a good show. Wonder what TOC never sticks with one team for long. Is he just naturally ornery? And if Rob Huff is coming back? And if anyone will give Rivett a drive? Will the boost regs work a bit better this year? Will JP get a competitive team mate or just another pay driver? And if FF will have more than five cars this year!



#6 midgrid

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Posted 19 January 2013 - 18:39

Of the unconfirmed drivers, Porsche Carrera Cup UK driver Sam Tordoff has stated that he hopes to drive in the BTCC this year.

#7 BRG

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Posted 20 January 2013 - 12:10

Looking forward to WSR showing the rest the way with the new little BMW. It should lead to some spectacular whining from Plato if he finds that his massive car advantage has been eroded.

#8 V8 Fireworks

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Posted 21 January 2013 - 05:50

Looking forward to WSR showing the rest the way with the new little BMW. It should lead to some spectacular whining from Plato if he finds that his massive car advantage has been eroded.

I find it amusing that Neal and Plato are still competitive, when their contemporaries in other touring car series have long since retired or have become grid fillers. :drunk:

On the topic of the new BMW 3 series, it is remarkable how similar it looks to the old one. I seriously don't think most people could pick the difference at a glance. It's a very interesting design decision or indecision (ok, Audi have got them beat as it's hard to tell about three or four generations of their car, never mind just the one).

Edited by V8 Fireworks, 21 January 2013 - 05:55.


#9 midgrid

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Posted 22 January 2013 - 20:38

Add me to the list of people who'll be supporting the Turkington-WSR combination this year. :)

Of the available seats, the most competitive must surely be that of Jason Plato's MG team-mate. Title sponsor KX is running its own young driver programme; its current roster comprises Stefan Hodgetts, Tom Ingram, Daniel Lloyd, Sam Tordoff, Rob Boston, Luke Herbert and Ant Whorton-Eales.

If Triple Eight go for one of these drivers, Tordoff seems the most likely as he has spoken openly of his hope to move into the BTCC, whereas the other drivers on that list of similar or greater experience (Hodgetts, Ingram and Lloyd) are staying in their current categories (Clio Cup, Ginetta Supercup and Porsche Carrera Cup respectively) for 2013 with the hope of becoming champions, whilst Boston, Herbert and Whorton-Eales have less overall experience at this level. I'd love to see a grid with both Rob Austin and Rob Boston on it, however.

Edited by midgrid, 22 January 2013 - 20:40.


#10 S3baman

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Posted 23 January 2013 - 19:08

I think this year the NGCT cars will be even faster, especially the MG. I expect very few surprises from the BMW guys, and now that Jackson' Focus is a NGCT as well the S2000 are kinda on the back burner. Still, Plato + Neal + Shedden should make for an intriguing title fight, as the last couple of years have shown. I just hope that the Civic can have a bit more turbo pressure this year. Yes, I know that the chassis is the best on the grid, but seeing it getting blasted by down the straights last year was so aggravating.

#11 billm99uk

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Posted 31 January 2013 - 13:48

Add me to the list of people who'll be supporting the Turkington-WSR combination this year. :)

Of the available seats, the most competitive must surely be that of Jason Plato's MG team-mate. Title sponsor KX is running its own young driver programme; its current roster comprises Stefan Hodgetts, Tom Ingram, Daniel Lloyd, Sam Tordoff, Rob Boston, Luke Herbert and Ant Whorton-Eales.

If Triple Eight go for one of these drivers, Tordoff seems the most likely as he has spoken openly of his hope to move into the BTCC, whereas the other drivers on that list of similar or greater experience (Hodgetts, Ingram and Lloyd) are staying in their current categories (Clio Cup, Ginetta Supercup and Porsche Carrera Cup respectively) for 2013 with the hope of becoming champions, whilst Boston, Herbert and Whorton-Eales have less overall experience at this level. I'd love to see a grid with both Rob Austin and Rob Boston on it, however.


Looks like your Crystal Ball was working :up:

Tordoff joins MG for BTCC

Can't be worse than Neate!

#12 froggy22

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 11:41

Looking forward to this season. Lots of new cars to watch

#13 onewingedangel

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 12:52

I think this year the NGCT cars will be even faster, especially the MG. I expect very few surprises from the BMW guys, and now that Jackson' Focus is a NGCT as well the S2000 are kinda on the back burner. Still, Plato + Neal + Shedden should make for an intriguing title fight, as the last couple of years have shown. I just hope that the Civic can have a bit more turbo pressure this year. Yes, I know that the chassis is the best on the grid, but seeing it getting blasted by down the straights last year was so aggravating.


There has been work done on the 'Honda' engine to improve it's power at lower boost levels - which means it won't get as high a boost level as it's maximum, but should be less hampered by the boost reductions that come with success.

#14 midgrid

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 10:22

Motorbase confirms Jackson and Smith. To be honest, I thought this had already happened. :blush:

Edited by midgrid, 13 February 2013 - 19:30.


#15 ColchesterF1

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 10:26

Glad to see Liam Griffin isn't returning. What a waste of time, money and spare cars.

I reckon we'll see a great season in the Clio's too. I reckon Hodgetts, Whorton-Eales and Wakefield will all be up there!

#16 PayasYouRace

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 15:22

Motorbase confirms Jackson and Smith.. To be honest, I thought this had already happened. :blush:


I thought so too.

#17 Burtros

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 15:31

I'm a fan of Vauxhall, always have been so its nice to see there will be a few on the grid this year after a fairly barren few years.

As for the title - I dont care who wins it, as long as it is not Jason Plato. I cannot stand his whinging!

ITV should be praised for their commitment to the coverage - its of decent quality and its just nice to still be able to watch the races on the telly.

#18 MarshalMike

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 17:21

And for what they're paid to show it, so it should be !

#19 midgrid

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 20:13

Just seen this news that Paul O'Neill has not been able to secure a 2013 BTCC drive.

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#20 billm99uk

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 21:56

Just seen this news that Paul O'Neill has not been able to secure a 2013 BTCC drive.


Can't say I've ever been his biggest fan in the past but considering how much quicker he was able to get that Toyota to go than anyone else who drove it last year, that's a bit sad. :cry:


#21 midgrid

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 18:20

Another driver confirmation that I thought had already happened: Jeff Smith will remain at Eurotech.

#22 billm99uk

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Posted 19 February 2013 - 14:01

Glad to see Liam Griffin isn't returning. What a waste of time, money and spare cars.


Oh dear...

Motorbase to run Liam Griffin in S2000

#23 Disgrace

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Posted 19 February 2013 - 17:23

He'll be nowhere near the front in an S2000 car, relax.

#24 midgrid

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 19:32

Welch to run an S2000 Focus for David Nye.

#25 DanardiF1

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 19:35

25 car grid now... not too shabby! And at least there's a few promising youngsters driving to balance out the older semi-pro drivers and the proper pros.

#26 Deluxx

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Posted 03 March 2013 - 16:01

Ugh it's looking like we won't have any races on TV here... blah

#27 Rob G

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Posted 03 March 2013 - 17:15

Ugh it's looking like we won't have any races on TV here... blah

Speed Channel has always shown the races in the off-season, starting in November or December. But with the supposed upcoming transition from Speed to Fox Sports One, I'm worried that it may not happen any more.

#28 billm99uk

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Posted 10 March 2013 - 15:17

New BMW looks nice....

WSR reveals its BTCC BMW

BTCC squad WSR buoyed by new BMW



#29 V8 Fireworks

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Posted 10 March 2013 - 15:34

New BMW looks nice....

WSR reveals its BTCC BMW

BTCC squad WSR buoyed by new BMW

Top stuff with the three doors.

I guess the others don't really care that WSR get the advantage of a stiffer three door bodyshell, as given the boost/ballast that gets applied it doesn't really matter?

#30 Fastcake

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Posted 11 March 2013 - 11:59

New BMW looks nice....

WSR reveals its BTCC BMW

BTCC squad WSR buoyed by new BMW


It sure does look pretty good. I'll be gunning them on this year, even though I normally don't take sides in BTCC and just watch for the fun of it :)

#31 midgrid

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Posted 11 March 2013 - 18:19

Another familiar face returns to the series: former Independent and Production champion, James Kaye, will drive the AmD team's S2000 VW Golf.

(Also I have seen that Motorbase will switch from a red to blue livery this year.)

#32 Suzy

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Posted 11 March 2013 - 21:16

Looks like a promising grid. I'm hoping to be at Donington Park for the Media Day on 21 March (rather further for me to travel than Silverstone) - is there a decent Travelodge nearby?

#33 BRG

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Posted 11 March 2013 - 21:39

Looks like a promising grid. I'm hoping to be at Donington Park for the Media Day on 21 March (rather further for me to travel than Silverstone) - is there a decent Travelodge nearby?

There's a Premier Inn at E. Midlands Airport - if you don't mind sharing with Lenny Henry  ;)

#34 TimRTC

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Posted 15 March 2013 - 20:22

I'm going to be driving down too for the afternoon, anyone know what to expect at these - is it worth trying to get into the paddock or just going to trackside?

#35 midgrid

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Posted 20 March 2013 - 20:51

Andrew Jordan will remain in the BTCC until at least the end of 2015, thanks to an extension from title sponsor Eurotech.

#36 TimRTC

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Posted 21 March 2013 - 11:52

Capacity 32 car grid confirmed.

http://www.btcc.net/...ail.php?id=3350

At Donington now waiting for public access.

#37 midgrid

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Posted 21 March 2013 - 14:56

Yes, several stories have been announced today (as you would expect from the Media Day):

- Rookie Warren Scott will drive an S2000 Seat Leon for new team BMR Restart;
- Lea Wood will return in the S2000 Vauxhall Vectra that he drove last season;
- Ollie Jackson will join Newsham at Speedworks, driving an NGTC Toyota Avensis;
- Andy Neate's team, named IP Tech Race Engineering, will enter two cars (the second driver is yet to be confirmed), but will miss the season-opener at Brands Hatch in favour of testing the new car;
- Michael Caine will make a full-time switch to the BTCC, driving an NGTC Ford Focus as Motorbase's roster expands to four drivers;
- The BTCC's current TV deal with ITV has been extended to the end of the 2016 season.


#38 midgrid

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Posted 21 March 2013 - 16:37

Also nice to see that the MGs have a less vomit-inducing colour scheme this year. :p

I'm already salivating over the prospect of 30 cars heading into Paddock Bend next weekend...

Edited by midgrid, 21 March 2013 - 16:38.


#39 MrAerodynamicist

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Posted 21 March 2013 - 17:33

According to BTCC.net, they will get one set of softer tyres per weekend, for use in one of the three races.

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#40 Alfisti

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Posted 21 March 2013 - 17:38

Still running lawnmower engines in this series?

#41 MrAerodynamicist

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Posted 21 March 2013 - 17:46

Currently it's 2 litre turbo charged units. I believe there were plans to up the boost now that they no longer need to maintain parity with the S2000 engines. However, they're still no V8.

#42 Alfisti

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Posted 21 March 2013 - 17:51

Hey at least you have the turbos back. What are the output numbers? I thought you were still running anemic NA 4's, at least you now how something resembling a race car engine. The old Sierra was an animal with the cossie engine.

#43 MrAerodynamicist

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Posted 21 March 2013 - 18:02

"300+" seems to be the least vague value I can find, which is a step up from the "~275bhp" that is the equivalently vague value given for S2000.

#44 Alfisti

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Posted 21 March 2013 - 18:55

You're still 200+ HP down but heading in the right direction.

#45 benzine

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Posted 21 March 2013 - 19:00

cant wait to see the maniacs race each other this season :D

#46 MrAerodynamicist

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Posted 21 March 2013 - 19:15

It's definitely looking in better health as a series. The switch to NGTC seems to be working with an full grid of an interesting mix of cars. The quality of the drivers looks like it's moving in the right direction too, even if it has a way to go to reclaim the level saw in the mid 90's. ITV extending the television contract until 2017 can only help.

Strangely, considering the state of the economy, British GT is also looking like it's heading for it's best line-up in years.

#47 midgrid

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Posted 21 March 2013 - 23:43

I've also just noticed that David Addison has replaced Toby Moody as ITV's lead commentator for this season.

#48 Fastcake

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Posted 22 March 2013 - 00:06

You're still 200+ HP down but heading in the right direction.


Do you really need that much power in a national touring car series?

It's definitely looking in better health as a series. The switch to NGTC seems to be working with an full grid of an interesting mix of cars. The quality of the drivers looks like it's moving in the right direction too, even if it has a way to go to reclaim the level saw in the mid 90's. ITV extending the television contract until 2017 can only help.

Strangely, considering the state of the economy, British GT is also looking like it's heading for it's best line-up in years.


Aye, I thought it was one of the healthier series last year, but this season we've got a full grid and new cars arriving. There were mumblings that the BTCC going alone in creating the NGTC cars would of been a mistake, but given how many cars are being built to the specifications it sure seems to have paid off. Good for us fans :)

#49 Callisto

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Posted 22 March 2013 - 01:25

Im looking forward to the start of the season :cool:

#50 Alfisti

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Posted 22 March 2013 - 02:05

Do you really need that much power in a national touring car series?


Oh yeah ya do. It's a far better spectacle. I remember watching the 4 bangers at Bathurst and there was some decent racing but every time a 600HP V8 went past it just wasn't the same. I loved Group A, 'specially those Sierra's.