Team BMR will again compete with four Subaru Levorg GT’s in the British Touring Car Championship, and will be a greater force to be reckoned with this season now that the car has a season’s worth of experience.
At the start of last year, the Subaru Levorg’s struggled for results as the team acclimatised the car to the championship. At the time, they were under no illusion that this window of time would be needed to bring the car up to speed. The teething period concluded with all cars being withdrawn from the three races at Thruxton, but when they returned, they were well on the pace and contesting wins and podiums regularly.
The line-up for 2017 see’s two drivers from last year stay. 96-time race-winner Jason Plato will be hunting down a third BTCC title. Alongside him James Cole, who raced for the team last season. The newcomers to the team are ex-MG driver and Jack Sears trophy winner Ash Sutton and newcomer to the BTCC Josh Price.
On the upcoming season, Jason Plato said,
“The team have done a good job over the winter, with development behind the scenes and the bit of testing we’ve done so far has translated into what we’re seeing on the stopwatch.
The big change is the tyre, nobody’s in the position they will be in when the season gets underway properly. That’s an unknown at the moment, how to manage the tyres, that’s one of the key skills of the team and driver to get the best from the tyre over the course of a race weekend. That will make it more interesting, as will the level of competition. Everyone seems to have raised their game and there’s some fresh precocious young talent that will probably be a pain in the arse.”
– Jason Plato
Alongside Plato this season is James Cole, who enters his fifth season of racing in the BTCC.
“It’s the first time in the BTCC that I’ve had continuity, there’s been a few engineering changes and i’m hoping we can get some much better results this year.”
– James Cole
One of the new additions to the Team BMR garage is Ash Sutton, who had a great debut season last year with MG, picking up a race win at Croft, consistently fighting in the top ten and claiming the Jack Sears trophy. Sutton has isn’t ready to ride on his BTCC achievements just yet though.
“We had a fantastic year last year, it was a great first year. But it’s time to put that behind us and focus on the upcoming season. There’s one goal that I want this season. The team, the four of us are going to work for this.”
– Ash Sutton
The driver to round up Team BMR’s line up was only given the green light for the seat 24-hours prior to the BTCC season launch at Donington Park. It was a late decision because at the last gasp, BMR Team Owner Warren Scott decided to race in the British Rallycross Championship instead. It opens a great opportunity to the youngster Josh Price, who had an impressive season in the Renault Clio Cup in 2016.
“It was a bit of a shock to be here today, I didn’t find out about the drive until yesterday. I haven’t been out in the car yet or sat in it, but it’s great to be part of this team.”
– Josh Price
Team BMR, branded as Adrian Flux Subaru Racing this season, will be contesting for top finishes from the opening round if they’ve managed to retain their position in the BTCC order over the winter. The car looks intimidating and was a menace to overtake when it got up to speed later on in the 2016 season. They will be key protagonists of the Championship in 2017 if the car is anything like the one it eventually became last season.