BRANDS HATCH SEASON PREVIEW
ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT BTCC 2019
Rounds 1, 2 and 3 of the 2019 British Touring Car Championship get underway this weekend as the season roars into life at Brands Hatch. Set to take place over thirty rounds, across ten different race weekends, at eight venues around the UK, the BTCC is one of the most anticipated motorsport championships in the world.
NEW COMBINATIONS AND REGULATIONS
After a winter of exciting new car announcements and driver shuffles, the 2019 entry list was rubber stamped just last week at the official pre-season test. The 30 drivers met on track for the first time since the dramatic finale in Autumn last year, and it wet the appetite for the thousands of fans and followers desperate for the 2019 BTCC action to get underway.
Alongside new car and driver combinations there are also changes to regulations for the 2019 season. Most notably there is a reduction in maximum success ballast from 75kgs to 54kgs and a change to the strike and reprimand system. Another key difference this season will see drivers required to run the soft, medium and hard compound tyres at Snetterton resulting in a change to the overall tyre choice strategy from 2018.
NEW BMW 3 SERIES
Team BMW were present at the Kent circuit last week with their new 3 Series and the drivers enjoyed some valuable running in the box fresh 330i M Sport. Thursday will see the cars complete a final shakedown, before moving on to Brands Hatch and commencing on-site preparations. The complete grid of 30 cars will then take to the track for the first free practice on Saturday morning.
Colin Turkington insists the team is in good shape and that time spent with the engineering department has been vital in his preparation.
“The focus for this weekend is to start from a good base setup, learn as quickly as we can and score well in each race. I’m confident we can hit the ground running and following our promising test last week we can be excited about the potential of the new 3 Series.
The change to the tyre strategy will make things interesting and it’s something I’ve been carefully considering.
The winter has passed quickly for me with lots of positive changes in my life and I feel fresh and motivated to bring something new to my game.
This is the first time I’ve been able to continue with WSR following a victorious season and I’m thrilled we can do this is in a new car for Team BMW. I’ve been working closely with our engineering team recently and we’re doing all we can to fast track our understanding of the 330i. This is the area I need to hone in on.
The grid looks as strong as ever and I’m prepared to battle hard for points. It won’t be easy to retain my title but ultimately that is the target for sure. My goal was to improve myself as a driver for this season and see where that takes us. For now I’ll be taking it one race at a time.
The greatest show in town is about to get going and I couldn’t be happier to be involved.”
BRANDS HATCH RACE WEEKEND SCHEDULE
- Free practice 1 – 9.30am
- Free practice 2 – 12.05pm
- Qualifying – 3.10pm
- Follow live timing online – click here
- Watch qualifying live online – click here
SUNDAY – RACE DAY
- Race 1 – 11.30am
- Race 2 – 2.15pm
- Race 3 – 5.05pm
WATCH LIVE ON ITV4
Showing on ITV4 this Sunday from 10:15am, Brands Hatch will be broadcast LIVE throughout the day and feature a chat with the defending Champion filmed recently at the stunning Hever Castle.
STAY UP TO DATE ON SOCIALS
Make sure to keep up to date with exclusive images and information on Colin’s instagram, twitter and facebook channels.
ABOUT BRANDS HATCH INDY
Circuit length: 1.21 miles
Qualifying record: Tom Ingram, 47.990s, 2016
Race record: Matt Neal, 48.498s, 2011
TThe BTCC grid will use the SOFT tyre as the option tyre at Brands Hatch. The drivers must choose one race to run the option tyre and make this choice before qualifying on Saturday.Back to news