Colin Turkington took an Independent Championship win and third place overall in the opening race at Donington Park this afternoon. After dicing with James Thompson for the majority of the race Colin held second place for a number of laps, on several separate occasions before eventually taking the chequered flag in third. After the race he said: “Thompson and I battled throughout the race but in the end his car was just that little bit stronger. I’m pleased to get on the podium and it’s good to do it for the guys at WSR. I’ve now got plenty of champagne for the party tonight!”
Anthony made a good start from 7th on the grid and had already made up a couple of places by the end of the first lap. At first Anthony was tempted to play the tactical game, but with the retirement of Matt Neal the Independent Championship title came that little bit closer and a 5th place finish guaranteed some extra points. Anthony commented: “The car felt pretty good but we’ll still change the set-up slightly for the next race. I thought about the race strategically until (Matt) Neal dropped out. It made sense to take the points. I knew that after the first few laps that I wasn’t going to win the drivers title and decided to settle for the most points that I could.”
Anthony drove a strong race to finish 4th overall and claim the Independents Championship title. Anthony also narrowed the gap on Plato, leaving them to fight it out in the last race for third place overall in the Driver Championship.
Colin Turkington’s runner-up spot in the Independent Championship was confirmed by his 7th place finish and the retirement of the only other title contender, Matt Neal.
Anthony had a difficult race and lost places early on which he struggled to regain. But on the bright side the HarrierZeuros Championship was won. After finishing the final race of the 2004 BTCC season, he said: “It’s great to secure the Independent Championship which is amazing for the WSR team who have been operating on limited resources. But to achieve it with Colin as runner-up is fantastic. During the season I was in the running for the Drivers Championship but it the end it didn’t quite work out. But all things considered, it’s been a great season.
Colin made good progress early on in the race which was only increased with the deployment of the safety car on lap four, bunching up the field. Sitting in 4th position he put the pressure on Dan Eaves for several laps. Colin explains: “It was a very entertaining race. I was struggling later on to keep pace with Dan. My car was a lot stronger under braking but he had the legs on me in other places. He made a small mistake going into Redgate and that was my chance to get on his tail. I had nothing to loose by attacking which unfortunately didn’t pay off. But summing it up it’s been a great season and all credit to the guys at WSR.”
Summarising on the final meeting and the 2004 season team principal, Dick Bennetts said: “I’m very pleased we achieved one, two in the Independents. The last race was tough for Anthony and it’s a shame he didn’t manage to hold onto third place in the overall driver standings. I’m proud of the effort put in by the whole team and the success we’ve achieved when you consider the budget we’ve had to operate on. The fact that we’ve mixed it with the larger manufacturer backed teams goes to show that Independent teams in the championship can challenge for outright honours. A big thank you goes to all our partners and supporters involved during this year. ”