Over recent years, Matt Neal and Gordon Shedden have developed a smooth partnership in the Honda Yuasa team. Both are consistently competitive and will be more so in 2017 as both drivers chase a fourth Driver Title in the BTCC, an elusive club that is currently only occupied by Andy Rouse.
Gordon Shedden returned the BTCC trophy after smuggling it to Scotland and enjoying its company over the winter, but if the trophy is a symbol of success, Shedden admitted that he was focused on the upcoming 2017 season straight after the celebrations at a dramatic conclusion to the title fight last season at Brand Hatch.
The day after Brands, I started thinking about preparing to fight for the title next year. With different drivers moving to different teams this season, It’s a bit of a Russian roulette. This is our 8th year as teammates, that continuity should play to our strength.
– Gordon Shedden
Honda Yuasa Racing, formerly and in many ways still Team Dynamics has benefitted from continuity in their driver line-up. Both of their drivers are fluent with the car and picked up seventeen podiums last season between them, an impressive haul of results. Matt Neal clarified that a professional relationship as teammates would play into their hands again for the upcoming season, and spoke briefly of the pre-season testing the team has been doing.
“One of our strengths has been unity, fought as a team with a clear focus. We’re both hungry for the title. Things didn’t pan out for me, but it’s even now.
In testing, we had a good test in Spain, we’ve done a lot of work over the winter, we should be at the forefront of where the FWD cars are.”
– Matt Neal
The Honda looks great this season with the inverted livery, and Shedden and Neal will have to hold off what is a very competitive field if they want to settle the 2017 title fight between themselves. Last season, both drivers were in contention for the title heading to the final round at Brands Hatch GP. The target this year will surely be a repeat.