Rob Collard relieved to salvage season-best qualifying after technical issue

Rob Collard managed to score his season-best qualifying result at Knockhill, despite sitting in the pit lane for a majority of the session due to a technical issue.

The Team BMW driver had smoke emanating from his BMW 125i M-Sport in the early stages of the 30-minute session, forcing him into the pit so that West Surrey Racing could work on the car.

Released back onto the circuit with just five minutes remaining, the Hampshire-based racer set a best time of 53.204 to secure fourth, making it four rear-wheel-drive cars in the top four.

Set to start alongside team-mate Colin Turkington for race one, Collard has his sights set on maintaining his championship charge with three solid points finishes.

“We are yet to determine what happened, I’ll have an answer when we debrief,” Collard told BTCC Crazy. “There was no real warning that it was going to happen, smoke just filled the cockpit when I came to a stop. The team did a great job to fix the problem and get me back out.

“I had such a sinking feeling sitting in the pits so to get back on track with five minutes to go, I just had to give it everything I had and put the hammer down.

“The car felt really good this morning so I knew that we had some pace in the car. It would have been interesting to see what we could have done had we not had the issue in the first place.”

Turning his attention to tomorrow’s three encounters, he added: “I have to continue pushing. The aim as always is to score podiums and even a race win or two. Race one is the main focus for me, and more importantly – finishing ahead of Ashley [Sutton] and Colin.”

PHOTO CREDIT: Jakob Ebrey Photography