BMW Pirtek Racing’s Andrew Jordan endured a difficult end to his 2017 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship season at Brands Hatch, although there was reason to cheer as he played a part in BMW wrapping up the Manufacturers’ Championship crown.
Andrew went into the weekend looking to try and challenge at the sharp end of the field in his WSR-run BMW 125i M Sport, but was left on the back foot after qualifying 18th on the grid in a session hit by mixed weather conditions on Saturday afternoon.
Further rain ahead of the opening race on Sunday morning left teams with a decision to take over which tyres to run, with the team gambling on wet rubber on Andrew’s car.
Having been nominated to score manufacturer points for BMW, Andrew rapidly made up places in the opening laps to lie inside the points but then slipped back down the order in the closing stages as the circuit dried.
Starting the second race from 27th, Andrew battled hard to make up ten places and put himself in a position to score points in the season finale, which would be held in worsening wet conditions.
A 13th place finish helped BMW to wrap up the Manufacturers’ title, with Andrew ending the season ninth in the championship standings.
Despite being a single car entry against a number of multi-car teams, BMW Pirtek Racing ends the campaign eighth in the Teams’ Championship.
“It was always going to be tough after qualifying and if we’d been able to get one more run in in the session, I think we could have been higher up the grid,” he said. “It was a difficult decision to make on the tyres ahead of race one and unfortunately for us, the gamble didn’t work out as we hoped and the circuit dried.
“The grid is so tight this season that race two was always going to be tough from the back but we made decent progress, and then we picked up some valuable points in race three as I helped BMW to wrap up the Manufacturers’ title.
“To have taken three wins this season in my first year with the BMW has been good, and I think I’ve been able to learn a lot that I can take into next year. I feel I’ve settled in well with the team and am comfortable in the car, and I see no reason why we can’t look to challenge for honours next season.
“My outright pace this year has been good but we’ve just not always had luck on our side and haven’t had the consistency we needed. With a good winter programme underneath us, and the consistency of knowing that I’m working with the same team and in the same car, that is something I’ll be looking to put right in 2018.”
The 2017 campaign marked the tenth successive season in which Andrew and Pirtek UK have raced together in the BTCC, with the successful partnership having kicked off in the year he made his debut in the series back in 2008.
“Once again this season, Andrew has been a fantastic ambassador for the Pirtek brand and has done us proud with his performances on track,” Pirtek UK managing director Chris Stuckey said.
“It’s been great to see him taking Pirtek Racing to the top step of the podium on multiple occasions this season, and with the pace he has shown in the BMW, we’re confident that there is plenty more success to come for our partnership in 2018.”