PLATO PLOTS A BTCC TI­TLE PUSH

Motor Sport News - - Racing News - Photos: Jakob Ebrey, Richard Styles

Ja­son Plato has tar­geted a cham­pi­onship vic­tory in Subaru’s maiden sea­son in the Bri­tish Tour­ing Car Cham­pi­onship this year.

The Ja­panese firm has linked up with Team BMR, which plans to op­er­ate four Levorg mod­els in the tin-top cat­e­gory this sea­son. They will be driven by cham­pi­ons Plato and Colin Turk­ing­ton, while team owner War­ren Scott and James Cole will drive the other two ver­sions.

The car was present at the se­ries’ me­dia day at Don­ing­ton Park last Tues­day but did not run due to some mi­nor parts de­lays. The crew did man­age to shake the car down at the Mill­brook prov­ing ground on Thurs­day last week.

“I will put my neck on the line and say that we will be win­ning races be­fore half way though the year, and the cham­pi­onship is on my agenda this year,” said Plato. “If I don’t win the ti­tle, I will be pissed off. We will be go­ing for it.”

The car’s de­signer Carl Faux is more cau­tious over the car’s po­ten­tial: “We want to get this thing ab­so­lutely right. It is un­re­al­is­tic to ex­pect us to be win­ning right from the out­set. We want to im­prove as a team and then hope­fully we will be in a po­si­tion to win reg­u­larly.

“If that means the first part of 2016 is spent nail­ing any re­li­a­bil­ity is­sues we have, then so be it.”

While Subaru missed the of­fi­cial test at Don­ing­ton, the run­ning was topped by three-time cham­pion Matt Neal in his Team Dy­nam­ics-run Honda Civic Type R. He spent the day work­ing with en­gi­neers from RML, which is pro­vid­ing all the new con­trol parts for the cham­pi­onship. Neal set his time on his fi­nal run of the day, eclips­ing Ash Sut­ton (MG6) and Rob Austin (Toy­ota Aven­sis).

“I did the last run with new tyres, and the car felt re­ally good,” said Neal. “We were work­ing hard with RML and the car im­proved over the course of the day. It was the best it had been so far and has given us plenty of op­ti­mism.”

Subaru Levorg is promis­ing New car has run now

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