Touring Cars: Priaulx out to impress in home race

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The Independent Online

Andy Priaulx will be going all out to give his fans something to cheer in the World Touring Car Championship's seventh round of the season, at Brands Hatch this weekend.

The three-time and reigning world champion won at the Kent track last year and is looking for more of the same. Priaulx said: "As drivers, when we go to our home race we forget about the championship, we just want to win in front of our own fans. We are racers at the end of the day and we want to be on pole and winning races. "It's always nice being on home soil because we spend so much time away from home and in other countries. It's nice to have family and friends here."

Priaulx and BMW have endured a testing campaign as SEAT's diesel-powered Leons have enjoyed an edge in straight-line speed. Seat's Gabriele Tarquini leads the drivers' standings; Priaulx is fourth, 15 points behind.

The Spanish team won the first four races of the season, before the Touring Car Bureau cut engine capacities in an effort to level the playing field. Priaulx feels the governing body took too long to do so, but remains bullish over his chances of a fourth successive world title.

"You have to say well done to SEAT but I'm sure if it had been BMW running up to a second per lap faster then immediately things would change," he said. "But I'm always up for a scrap. SEAT are really strong and we have had quite a lot thrown at us but I still feel we can win this championship.

"As I have experienced in the past, you can have a healthy lead and it can be eroded, so I feel things can come good. My gut feeling is it can come to us."

Priaulx will demonstrate a BMW-Sauber Formula One car during the weekend at Brands Hatch.

"It's great to get the chance to do something like this in front of your fans," he said. "It's one of the great things about driving for a big manufacturer like BMW."