New BTCC season dawns for WSR and BMW at Donington

WSR and BMW begin a new British Touring Car Championship season at Donington Park this weekend with another spot in series history the target.

An intensive winter development programme for the hybrid BMW 330e M Sport has given fresh hopes of securing a record-breaking 10th Manufacturers’ crown for the German manufacturer and of adding to WSR’s 16 outright titles.

“The new season is here and, as always, we’re aiming high and want to make BMW the first 10-time Manufacturers’ champions,” commented Dick Bennetts, Team Principal. “It’s been a very busy winter at WSR as we’ve gone over almost every part of our BMW race cars with a new engine, produced in the UK for the first time, changes to the bodywork, cooling and under the skin.

“We’re pleased with the progress in testing, but we won’t know where we are until we arrive at Donington and see everyone’s true performance levels.”

With three days of testing at Donington Park and Pembrey last week leaving the team in positive mood, hopes are high as the season-opener approaches in the East Midlands.

Four-time series champion Colin Turkington will kick off his 20th season in the BTCC and his eighth in succession as a Team BMW driver. Aiming for a record fifth Drivers’ crown, the Northern Irishman begins the campaign at a track where he has won eight times.

Team-mate Adam Morgan was a podium-finisher on his Team BMW debut at Donington last year and the Lancashire racer returns for a second campaign as he bids to add to his 11 career wins and to improve on his ninth place in the 2023 standings.

Spending his third year with WSR is Jake Hill, who will race the Laser Tools Racing with MB Motorsport BMW. After scoring a career-best six wins in 2023 and finishing third in the Drivers’ points, the Kent ace has also targeted championship glory this year.

Unfortunately, despite the team’s best efforts, the fourth WSR-entered BMW, tested by Bobby Thompson at Brands Hatch, will not race at Donington. Discussions remain ongoing to hopefully ensure its participation at future rounds.

Colin, Adam and Jake will all race an upgraded BMW 330e M Sport, which is derived from the award-winning 330e production model and which now sports the latest LCI updates.

Under the skin there have been further enhancements with a new two-litre turbocharged BMW engine produced, for the first time, in the UK at BMW’s Hams Hall engine facility and providing improved performance during pre-season testing.

Several other revisions to the BMWs to enable greater performance, have been instigated and tested during the past month.

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