Colin Turkington’s bid for a third British Touring Car Championship prize was cut short by an enforced retirement on the second lap of the season’s final race.
On a day of high drama at Brands Hatch, the Portadown-born driver entered the closing weekend trailing leader Ashley Sutton by 10 points.
However, contact during an incident on the second lap of round 30 left Turkington with damage to the rear of his BMW and unable to continue.
“I am gutted for the rest of the team but sport is decided by fine margins, especially touring cars,” said Turkington in his post-exit interview with ITV. “There was nothing we could do and it is just one of those things.
“We didn’t get the luck, after starting the race with good pace and making the right decision on the tyres.
“The guys gave me a great car and we prepared in the right way but it was out of our control.
“Some days it goes your way and others it doesn’t but congratulations to Ash.”
Positions of 17th and 15th respectively across qualifying and race one left Turkington’s title dream in doubt.
However, a superb drive over race two left Turkington home first - despite starting 15th on the grid - thanks to a memorable performance.
As a result, Turkington started the closing test down by six points to Sutton and 10th on the reverse grid.
His positive start offered signs of hope before the decisive incident on the second lap signalled the end of his race, weekend and season.