You don’t rack up 590 British Touring Car Championship race starts without learning a thing or two about the finer nuances of race car driving, especially when those outings come in one of the most competitive saloon car championships in the world.
Jason Plato has seen is it all. He’s been there, done it and has the t-shirt. That’s why on a recent trip to Thruxton, resident KHtv host Duncan Vincent sounded out the man, that people love to hate, about his BTCC season and career to date.
Plato has raced against some of the greatest Touring Car drivers of all time… Tarquini, Giovanardi, Muller and Thompson, all former champions in their own right. But, ahead of Knockhill, the double-champion pays particular homage to a former rival, now living in Dunfermline… and it’s not Gordon Shedden.
“When l joined the championship back in 1997, Alain Menu was the best Touring Car driver in the World and I’m deeply indebted to Alain, because I learned a lot from him. He was pretty tasty when he was at his best.
“The list is long though, Muller; hard as nails. Rydell, Tarquini, Thompson, there are so many of them. So many, good, crafty, devious hard racers… Gordon and Matt Neal, lots and lots of them.”
Plato must have some stories to tell. Not afraid to speak his mind and never one to miss an opportunity to go toe-to-toe with a fellow competitor on track – regardless or age or status. The charismatic Englishman has just brought out a new book “How not to be a professional racing driver.”
We bet it’s a hoot.
Anyway, Plato’s switch back to Vauxhall for the 2019 season, allied to the signing of Rob Collard looked on paper, like a masterstroke for the Sterling Insurance with Power Maxed Racing team. However, despite the pairing’s vast experience, results have been slow to come. That said, the last few outings have seen Plato back at the sharp end, tussling for pole positions and podiums. And, let’s be honest, whether you like Jason Plato or not, you’d much rather he was at the head of the field causing all sorts of mayhem, than at the back of the field toodling around making up the numbers.
The team are on form heading to Knockhill and Plato is in fighting mood, as the recent tussle with Ash Sutton at Snetterton proves. It’s just another reason why this year’s BTCC event at Knockhill is a must see for race fans.
Tickets for the event can be booked online, subject to pre-booking discounts. Alternatively, tickets will be available on the gate all weekend.
Make no bones about it, Plato is back and he’s not here to cut the flowerbeds, he’s here to win.