Motorsport: Tordoff confident of being in the touring car title race

Leeds racing driver Sam Tordoff.
Leeds racing driver Sam Tordoff.
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LEEDS SPEEDSTER Sam Tordoff says he has made the signing of the season in re-signing for MG KX Momentum Racing ahead of the British Touring Car Championship 2014.

The Yorkshireman will again be joined by experienced team-mate Jason Plato though Tordoff says gone are the days of being solely his understudy.

As title-chasing Tordoff himself says: “there’ll be no team orders this year.”

Tordoff, 24, enjoyed a fantastic first season as a BTCC driver in netting a sixth-placed finish highlighted by a maiden victory at Snetterton in August.

It followed that the Leeds star was in big demand ahead of the 2014 campaign but Tordoff believes the team that can propel him into a championship contender were always right under his nose.

The Horsforth-based racer admits the MG6 GT cars could not compete with the Honda Civics last term but the car has improved immeasurably over the winter with Tordoff quietly optimistic of toppling the Hondas and even team-mate Plato en route to a genuine title tilt in 2014.

“We looked at the possibility of going elsewhere but it would have been a big call to leave where we are,” Tordoff said.

“Continuity counts for a lot in most sports and I’m with a great team, with a great team-mate and we’ve got a Championship winning car really if we put it all together.

“The car wasn’t good enough last year to beat the Hondas but we’ve made a huge amount of progress over the winter. This time a year ago we stood still but this winter we have really done a lot of homework and I’ve been in the car five times already.

“It’s been a massive step on from last winter and so it’s all looking very promising. We didn’t really need to look elsewhere – it was all starting to gel really nicely towards the end of the year and it would have been a big thing to leave and start again.”

There are now just six weeks until a new BTCC season starts again with round one at Brands Hatch on March 30. And Tordoff will enter the new campaign backed by a seriously promising 2013 – so promising that he sees no reason why he cannot deliver a title tilt.

“I was definitely pleased with last year and it was better than I could have hoped for,” said Tordoff. “And I raised my profile a lot and I know that just from the interaction that I get with people now on Twitter and stuff like that.

“It’s all come on leaps and bounds. From my point of view, we had a really good learning year and now I feel a lot more in control of everything going back this year.

“I know it all and know how to deal with everything and not only the racing side of it but all the media side of it as well.

“I’m quite comfortable actually to go back this year and just be at ease with it all and hopefully get the results on the track.”

There is one ultimate result that Tordoff dreams of – being champion – an outcome that the Leeds ace believes is feasible while not exactly expected.

“I think it is possible that I can win it,” said Tordoff.

“But at the same time I don’t want to go in with that specific aim to win it because I think that would be very naive.”

“There’ll be no team orders this year,” Tordoff added.

“Of course, last year I had so much to learn and Jason was a massive asset for me to learn from. There’s no doubt about it that he was going for the Championship and I wasn’t in the hunt last year. But this year is a different story now. There’ll be no one and two and we are both going for glory.”