WORCESTERSHIRE’S Rob Austin says he is out for more Dunlop British Touring Car podium results at North Yorkshire’s Croft circuit this weekend despite a change to the rules designed to peg back the performance of his rear-wheel-drive Exocet Racing Audi.
Championship organisers have mandated that, as of Croft, all RWD cars must be fitted with a longer first gear. The move also follows demands from rival teams using front-wheel-drive cars who make up the vast majority of the 30-strong grid.
That has resulted in considerable expense for the Rob Austin Racing team which has spent the past fortnight since Oulton Park’s races preparing Austin’s and team-mate Hunter Abbott’s Audis in its Pershore workshops.
It was at Oulton that Austin achieved his first BTCC podium result of 2014 with a second place finish.
Austin, from Evesham, said: “We don’t ever complain when the FWD cars have a clear advantage, which has been more often than not this year. They have far more advantages in both qualifying and race trim – it’s just ours are more visible than theirs.
“If they feel that we have such an advantage I wonder how the works teams who have been most vocal on the subject would feel about swapping cars. I’m sure their stories would change very very quickly!
“The BTCC has been fantastic this year, we have a full and world-class grid and the championship is one of the best in the world, so why change it?”
Despite the rules adjustment, Austin still goes to Croft with plenty of optimism, adding: “I am confident we can have a strong weekend.”