LEEDS star Sam Tordoff is quietly confident of retaining his British Tour Car Championship series lead at Croft – but insists he is already fulfilling a childhood dream.
Tordoff, 27, is in his fourth year of BTCC racing and leads the series for the first time ever heading into tomorrow’s three races in North Yorkshire. The track is particularly well-suited to BMWs with BMW 125i M Sports winning all three races at the track last year – giving the Leeds racer further hope that his brilliant season can be continued this weekend. Tomorrow’s three races mark the half-way point of the season, with Team JCT600 GardX star Tordoff loving life in his fourth season, however the current year concludes.
“If I was to win the championship it would be an accumulation of 19 years of racing,” Tordoff told the YEP. “Touring Cars was always my ultimate goal and just to be here and compete, that was the dream. If we went on to actually win it then that would be way more than a dream complete because the dream has already been fulfilled as far as I am concerned but there’s a long way to go. This is now my fourth year and it’s just all starting to click into place, really. We have been there or thereabouts for the last couple of years and now it’s just really starting to gather momentum. We had such a good weekend last time out and scored a load of points and to come to my home circuit and lead the championship, it’s quite nice how it’s all panned out really. It’s cool.”
Tordoff currently leads Matt Neal by one point in the drivers’ standings, with another 25 points back to third-placed Rob Collard who is one point ahead of Gordon Shedden. The Leeds ace must carry extra weight in race one this weekend due to being the championship front-runner but Tordoff said: “If there’s anywhere where that disadvantage should be negated then it’s here because we are so strong here anyway.
“It’s a renowned rear wheel drive BMW circuit so I actually think we can still have a good weekend anyway. I have got quite high hopes that we can go into the summer break after this weekend still heading the championship. The BMW has got an amazing record around here and I won here last year for the first time. We have just got to keep scoring points. I don’t want to count my chickens before they hatch but it’s looking good.”
There’s 30 races in the championship and they all count so after Croft there’s still 15 left. We just need to keep plugging away, stay out of trouble and keep scoring points.”
If that means three more victories for three different team-mates this weekend then all well and good.
“I want three for me around here but I am happy to share them around,” laughed Tordoff.
“I just need to get a haul of points this weekend, as you need every weekend.
“If we can have three top fives this weekend then we should find ourselves still top of the Championship for July.
“The car is really, really good this year, we’ve made some improvements to the engine and that has really come on strong and we don’t really have a weakness this year like we had last year.
“We have got this weight on but we should be somewhere near the front on Saturday afternoon in qualifying.”