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Round 8 - Knockhill - Qualifying

Press release   •   Sep 02, 2006 00:01 BST

Team RAC took to the Knockhill Circuit this afternoon with bio-ethanol fuel in its tanks to qualify for the first of tomorrows Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship races at the Scottish Circuit.

Team RAC BTCC cars perform well on bio-ethanol fuel

Team RAC took to the Knockhill Circuit this afternoon with bio-ethanol fuel in its tanks to qualify for the first of tomorrows Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship races at the Scottish Circuit.

It was the first time that the MG ZS' of Colin Turkington and Rob Collard had run competitively following the change of fuel type, and the indications were good right from the first practice session with Colin Turkington setting the fastest lap time and making the most of the dry conditions.

Qualifying proved more of a challenge with the changing track conditions making the tyre choice difficult. Colin Turkington completed the entire session on a full set of wet-weather tyres with his best time of 58.223s placing him 6th on the grid. He said: "That wasn't an easy qualifying session as it was quite greasy out on track making it difficult to generate front end grip. It's difficult to set-up the car with those kind of conditions but we proved this morning that the car is quick and I'm more than confident for the race tomorrow. I just hope it's either wet or dry and not in between!"

Making the change to bio-ethanol, Colin added: "The change of fuel has been seamless and it doesn't appear to have any negative effects or cause us any dramas at all."

Whilst Rob Collard started the session on wet-weather tyres, later on the switch to slick tyres on the front looked the right decision. As the track began to dry, the change didn't come quite soon enough for Rob to improve on his 9th place on the grid (58.352s). Rob explained: "I went out on wet tyres and things were going well with the car feeling good. As the track started to dry we considered changing to a combination of slicks and wets. I could see that those cars with the same set-up improved on their times and I'm sure with a couple of extra laps and some more heat in the tyres I could have got a faster lap. I need to get a good start in the race tomorrow to be in with a chance of a podium, something I really want this weekend."

SEAT Sports Jason Plato took pole position after setting a time of 57.467s during the final stages of the session.

The eighth BTCC round at Knockhill will be transmitted on ITV1 on Sunday 3 September starting at 15:00hrs. The programme will include highlights from race one and two with race three being shown live in its entirety. Satellite viewers can watch all three races live on Motors TV commencing at 10:20hrs. Further information on programme replays can be found at www.teamrac.com.

Copyright free images for editorial purposes are available at www.teamrac.com.

To arrange an interview with a member of Team RAC, please contact Sarah Owen on 07793 633153.

About RAC

With around seven million members, RAC is one of the UK's most progressive motoring organizations, providing services for both private and business motorists. Whether it's roadside assistance, windscreen repair and replacement, learning to drive, vehicle inspections and checks, legal and financial services or up-to-the-minute traffic and travel information - RAC is able to meet motorists' needs. RAC incorporates BSM, RAC Auto Windscreens, RAC Direct Insurance and HPI.

Aviva bought RAC last year. The acquisition brings together RAC's powerful brand and customer base with the expertise and leading position in motor insurance of Norwich Union Insurance (part of Aviva). Norwich Union is the UK's largest insurer, insuring one in seven motor vehicles and with a market share of around 14 per cent.

About Aviva

Aviva is the world's sixth-largest insurance group and the biggest in the UK. It is one of the leading providers of life and pensions products in Europe and has substantial businesses elsewhere around the world. Its main activities are long-term savings, fund management and general insurance. It has premium income and investment sales of £33 billion and £291 billion of assets under management. The group has 60,000 employees serving 30 million customers worldwide

Notes to Editors

For all media enquiries, please contact the RAC press team on +44 (0)1454 664 123. The line is manned by an on-call press officer outside office hours. ISDN radio studio facilities are available for interviews Monday to Friday.

About the RAC

First formed in 1897, the RAC has been looking after the needs of its members and championing the interests of drivers for more than 120 years.

Today it has more than eight million members and is one of the UK’s most progressive motoring organisations, providing services for both private and business motorists. Whether it's roadside assistanceinsurancebuying a used carvehicle inspections and checkslegal services or up-to-the-minute traffic and travel information – the RAC offers a solution for all motoring needs. The RAC is committed to making motoring easier, safer, more affordable and more enjoyable for drivers and road users.

The RAC is the motorist’s champion and campaigns to support the interests of its members and UK drivers at a national level. This includes voicing concerns about the increasing cost of motoring, particularly the price of fuel and the high level of tax levied on it, advancing levels of road safety, and supporting the needs of all drivers, from young to old.

The RAC’s annual Report on Motoring – first published in 1989 – is one of a kind and provides a clear insight into the concerns and issues facing today’s motorists.

For the very latest news on UK fuel prices, check RAC Fuel Watch. It provides a comprehensive guide to the latest UK unleaded petrol and diesel prices – both at the wholesale level and at the pump - and tracks these prices daily to help drivers check if the price they pay to fill up is a fair one.