With 12 different drivers taking top honours in 2016, who would have predicted that the 2017 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship finale at Brands Hatch would yield a record-breaking 13th different race winner?
We’re reliving each of those victors’ efforts and BMW Pirtek Racing’s Andrew Jordan is next up.
The Lichfield racer had made the switch from Motorbase over the off-season, meaning the season opener on the Indy loop would be his first competitive outing in the 125i M Sport – all liveried up in that familiar Pirtek blue.
It was a quick blast off the line for fast-starting Jordan, with the benefits of a move to rear-wheel drive machinery making themselves immediately apparent – the 2013 champ needing little time to adjust as he flew into the lead by the time the pack rounded Paddock Hill Bend.
Pressure was immediately alleviated on the leader former team-mate Mat Jackson’s Ford Focus was forced into an excursion across the gravel as he looked to pass Tom Chilton’s Power Maxed Racing Vauxhall Astra around the outside – the latter able to hold on to second spot.
Meanwhile, Jordan’s new stablemate, Colin Turkington, in the sister Team BMW 125i M Sport, had leapt up the order from tenth on the grid to place third by little over mid-distance in the race. He wasted no time in reeling in Chilton’s Astra, and duly the Ulsterman was able to nip by on lap 17 to set about hounding BMW newcomer Jordan.
Jordan was forced into fending off the advances of Turkington in the closing stages, with the double champ right on his tail. He wouldn’t give way though and despite every trick in the book from Colin, including a friendly nudge through Clearways, the 2013 champ held firm to lead home what was a landmark one-two on BMW’s return to the BTCC as a manufacturer.
“That was quite a start wasn’t it with rear-wheel drive and a new team?” said Jordan, post-race. “I was getting a bit twitchy with Colin (Turkington) looking really, really strong on the soft tyres behind – the rear-wheel drive expert!
“We had a little rub at the end there but it was a good way to end. I knew he wasn’t going to do anything silly. It wasn’t the calmest moment of my career when he did get past Tom (Chilton). I was hoping he’d be behind him a bit longer but I knew he was coming.
“I just kept driving to my markers, tried not to look in my mirrors any more than usual and tried to be kind on the left rear tyre. It was special really, to get the win on my first event with BMW Pirtek Racing and West Surrey Racing. It was all down to the team – credit to the guys for all the work they’ve put in, especially with the addition of the new engine.”
Jordan added a couple more top step appearances in 2017 –one at Oulton Park and another at Rockingham – on his way to ninth in the overall standings.