2003 British Touring Car Championship season

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2003 BTCC season
Previous: 2002 Next: 2004

The 2003 Green Flag MSA British Touring Car Championship season was the 46th British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) season.

Changes for 2003[edit]

The Drivers' Championship was won by Yvan Muller.

Teams and drivers[edit]

For 2003 all three main manufacturers in the premier Touring class ran three cars. Reigning champions Vauxhall cut down to three Astra Coupes by axing its Egg Sport squad and entering three VX Racing-liveried cars, run once again by Triple 8. 2002 champion James Thompson and runner-up Yvan Muller remained, and Paul O'Neill moved across from Egg Sport to take the third seat. MG expanded to three West Surrey Racing-run ZSs, with Colin Turkington joining 2002 drivers Anthony Reid and Warren Hughes after impressing in his debut season with the Team Atomic Kitten MG squad, which had also been run by WSR.

Arena Motorsport ran three Civic Type Rs for Honda, with only Irishman Alan Morrison remaining from the 2002 line-up. Matt Neal replaced Andy Priaulx (who left to contest the European Touring Car Championship with BMW) after moving from Vauxhall, and teenager Tom Chilton filled the third seat after an impressive debut year in the Barwell Motorsport-run Astra. Proton again returned as a fourth manufacturer, retaining both David Leslie and Phil Bennett in its two Impians.

Vic Lee Racing again served as Peugeot's representative on the grid (although the marque pulled its factory support at the end of 2001), entering two newly built 307s for Dan Eaves, who had contested both 2001 and 2002 for the team, and Carl Breeze, who joined the team mid-way through 2002. Production class champions Synchro Motorsport made the step up to the top class with champion driver James Kaye running an ex-works Honda Civic Type R, as did Rob Collard with his self-run team, entering an ex-works Vauxhall Astra Coupe, and GA Motorsports with Gavin Pyper racing a similar machine. Pyper ran out of funding mid-way through the season, resulting in Breeze switching from VLR to replace him and Paul Wallace being called up from GA's Production class squad to drive a second Astra, previously raced as a one-off by Gareth Howell. Howell himself later appeared in another ex-Triple 8 Astra for Team Dynamics. Renault Clio Cup graduate Daniel Buxton took over Breeze's driving duties at VLR.

Barwell Motorsport headed the Production class field after stepping back down from the Touring class and acquiring Synchro Motorsport's title winning Honda Civic Type Rs, which were driven by young debutante Luke Hines, and Alan Blencowe, moving from GA Motorsports. Edenbridge Racing cut down to a single BMW 320i for single seater convert Michael Bentwood, with Tom Boardman switching to John Batchelor's team (now known as Team Varta) in a new Peugeot 307. Jim Edwards Jnr returned in a Honda Accord as the team's second driver. A Peugeot 306 GTi and a second 307 joined the Varta line-up mid-way through the season together with Jay Wheals and Richard Marsh, and each of the four drivers raced more than one of these chassis across the remainder of the year.

GA Motorsport campaigned Alfa Romeo 156s for a fourth year, with Chris Ryan and Paul Wallace driving. However, Ryan withdrew after an expensive crash in the second round at Brands Hatch, and Wallace was called up to the team's Touring class assault mid-season. Mark Fullalove joined the grid mid-season with his own team, driving the Peugeot 306 he had raced for Tech-Speed Motorsport in 2002, while Jason Hughes was another late entry in a Nissan Primera run by his own Kartworld Racing team.

Other changes[edit]

  • Dunlop were confirmed as the sole tyre supplier, replacing BF Goodrich
  • The series included a race meeting at Rockingham for the first time, replacing Knockhill
  • Qualifying sessions at each race meeting lasted 20 minutes (compared to the 43 minutes of 2002) and only determined the starting grid for the first race
  • The finishing positions of race 1 determined the grid for race 2
  • Mandatory pit-stops were introduced for all Touring class cars in both races
  • Alan Gow returned as series administrator midway through the season, replacing Richard West

Teams and drivers[edit]

Team Car No. Drivers Class Rounds
Team Halfords Peugeot 307 0 England Dan Eaves I All
10 England Carl Breeze I 1–5
30 England Danny Buxton I 6–10
VX Racing Vauxhall Astra Coupé 1 England James Thompson M All
2 France Yvan Muller M All
8 England Paul O'Neill M All
Honda Racing Honda Civic Type-R 3 England Matt Neal M All
7 England Tom Chilton M All
9 Northern Ireland Alan Morrison M All
MG Sport & Racing MG ZS 4 Scotland Anthony Reid M All
5 Northern Ireland Colin Turkington M All
6 England Warren Hughes M All
GA Motorsports Vauxhall Astra Coupé 10 England Carl Breeze I 6–10
44 Scotland Gavin Pyper I 1–5
45 Wales Gareth Howell I 4
46 England Paul Wallace I 6–10
Alfa Romeo 156 54 P 1–5
55 England Chris Ryan P 1–2
Synchro Motorsport Honda Civic Type-R 11 England James Kaye I All
Petronas Syntium Proton Proton Impian 15 Scotland David Leslie M All
20 England Phil Bennett M All
Collard Racing Vauxhall Astra Coupé 21 England Rob Collard I All
Team Dynamics Vauxhall Astra Coupé 45 Wales Gareth Howell I 7–10
Barwell Motorsport Honda Civic Type-R 52 England Luke Hines P All
53 England Alan Blencowe P All
Mark Fullalove Racing Peugeot 306 GTi 60 England Mark Fullalove P 7–10
Team Varta Honda Accord 69 England Jim Edwards Jr. P 1–6
71 England Richard Marsh P 7–10
Peugeot 307 69 England Jim Edwards Jr. P 7–10
70 England Tom Boardman P All
Peugeot 306 GTI 71 England Richard Marsh P 6
72 England Jay Wheals P 7–10
Edenbridge Racing BMW 320i 77 England Michael Bentwood P All
Kartworld Racing Nissan Primera 99 England Jason Hughes P 6–10
Icon Class
M Manufacturer
I Independent
P Production

Race calendar and winners[edit]

Round Circuit Date Pole Position Fastest Lap Winning Driver Winning Team Production Class winner
1 R1 Republic of Ireland Mondello Park 21 April France Yvan Muller England James Thompson England James Thompson VX Racing England Chris Ryan
R2 England Warren Hughes England James Thompson VX Racing England Michael Bentwood
2 R3 England Brands Hatch (Indy), Kent 5 May England James Thompson England Matt Neal England Matt Neal Honda Racing England Michael Bentwood
R4 England James Thompson France Yvan Muller VX Racing England Michael Bentwood
3 R5 England Thruxton Circuit, Hampshire 26 May England Matt Neal England Matt Neal France Yvan Muller VX Racing England Tom Boardman
R6 England Warren Hughes France Yvan Muller VX Racing England Tom Boardman
4 R7 England Silverstone Circuit
(International), Northamptonshire
8 June England James Thompson England James Thompson England James Thompson VX Racing England Luke Hines
R8 England Matt Neal France Yvan Muller VX Racing England Luke Hines
5 R9 England Rockingham Motor Speedway
(International Super Sports Car Long), Northamptonshire
22 June Northern Ireland Alan Morrison Northern Ireland Alan Morrison England Matt Neal Honda Racing England Tom Boardman
R10 England Warren Hughes France Yvan Muller VX Racing England Luke Hines
6 R11 England Croft Circuit, North Yorkshire 13 July England James Thompson England Matt Neal England Matt Neal Honda Racing England Tom Boardman
R12 France Yvan Muller Scotland Anthony Reid MG Sport & Racing England Luke Hines
7 R13 England Snetterton Circuit, Norfolk 9 August England James Thompson Northern Ireland Alan Morrison England Paul O'Neill VX Racing England Luke Hines
R14 England Matt Neal England Matt Neal Honda Racing England Tom Boardman
8 R15 England Brands Hatch (Indy), Kent 25 August France Yvan Muller England Warren Hughes England Warren Hughes MG Sport & Racing England Michael Bentwood
R16 Northern Ireland Colin Turkington Northern Ireland Colin Turkington MG Sport & Racing England Tom Boardman
9 R17 England Donington Park
(National), Leicestershire
7 September England James Thompson England Matt Neal England Matt Neal Honda Racing England Luke Hines
R18 Northern Ireland Colin Turkington France Yvan Muller VX Racing England Luke Hines
10 R19 England Oulton Park (Island), Cheshire 21 September England James Thompson Scotland Anthony Reid England James Thompson VX Racing England Alan Blencowe
R20 Scotland Anthony Reid England Matt Neal Honda Racing England Tom Boardman

Championship results[edit]

Drivers' Championships[edit]

Points system
 1st   2nd   3rd   4th   5th   6th   7th   8th   9th   10th  Fastest Lap Lead a lap
15 12 10 8 6 5 4 3 2 1 1 1
  • No driver may collect more than one "Lead a Lap" point per race no matter how many laps they lead.
  • Race 1 polesitter receives 1 point.
Pos Driver MON Republic of Ireland BHI England THR England SIL England RCK England CRO England SNE England BHI England DON England OUL England Pen. Pts
Touring Class (BTC-T)
1 France Yvan Muller 2* 2* 2 1* 1* 1* 2* 1* 3 1* Ret 3 3 Ret 2* 5* 3 1* 3 2* 233
2 England James Thompson 1* 1* 5 2 4 5 1* 2 5 4 2* 2 2* Ret 5 10 2* 3 1* Ret* 199
3 England Matt Neal Ret* Ret 1* 7 2* 11* Ret* Ret 1* Ret 1* 5* 4* 1* 4 Ret 1* 10 12 1* 148
4 England Paul O'Neill Ret 4 3* 3 3 3* 7 5* 10 6* 3 6* 1* 10* 6 2 6 4 Ret 5 138
5 Northern Ireland Alan Morrison 3 5 7 8* 5 2 4 Ret 2* Ret* Ret* 4 Ret* 2 14 3 5 5* 2* Ret 125
6 Scotland Anthony Reid Ret Ret 4 4 Ret 4* 10 4* 6 2* 5 1* 5 3 7 4 Ret 9 5 4 121
7 England Warren Hughes 4 Ret Ret* 5* Ret 6 Ret 3 8* 3 Ret 10 Ret 8 1* 6* 4 7 4 8 98
8 Northern Ireland Colin Turkington DNS Ret 6 Ret 8 Ret 3 8 Ret Ret 4 7 Ret 4 3* 1* 19 2 6 3 97
9 England Tom Chilton Ret 3 DNS DNS 7 10 5 6 4 7 7 12 6 5 8* 7 7 6 Ret DNS 70
10 England Rob Collard 6 7 13 Ret Ret DNS Ret 9 7 5 Ret 8 8 6 Ret Ret 9* 16 8 7 42
11 Scotland David Leslie 5 9 9 6 17 8 Ret 10 11 Ret 9 19 Ret 9 9 8 Ret Ret Ret DNS 28
12 Scotland Gavin Pyper Ret 6 8 Ret 6 Ret 6 7 9 Ret 24
13 England Carl Breeze Ret 10 Ret 10 10 Ret Ret DNS Ret 9 8 9 Ret 7 10 15* 8 8 15 11 22
14 England James Kaye Ret Ret 12 9 11 7 8 Ret Ret DNS 13 11 7* 11 11 Ret 10 11 10 12 16
15 England Dan Eaves Ret 8 11* Ret 9 Ret Ret Ret Ret 10 6* Ret Ret 12 12 11 11 14 11 9 15
16 Wales Gareth Howell 9* Ret 13 Ret 13 12 Ret 13 7* 6 14
17 England Phil Bennett Ret Ret 10 Ret 14 9 Ret Ret 12 8 10 15 9 Ret Ret 9 Ret 12 9 10 14
18 England Danny Buxton 12 Ret Ret Ret 15 14* 13 15 14 Ret 1
19 England Paul Wallace 11 Ret DNS Ret 17 13 12 Ret 13 Ret 0
Independents' Cup
1 England Rob Collard 6 7 13 Ret Ret DNS Ret 9 7 5 Ret 8 8 6 Ret Ret 9 16 8 7 160
2 England James Kaye Ret Ret 12 9 11 7 8 Ret Ret DNS 13 11 7 11 11 Ret 10 11 10 12 151
3 England Carl Breeze Ret 10 Ret 10 10 Ret Ret DNS Ret 9 8 9 Ret 7 10 15 8 8 15 11 141
4 England Dan Eaves Ret 8 11 Ret 9 Ret Ret Ret Ret 10 6 Ret Ret 12 12 11 11 14 11 9 126
5 Scotland Gavin Pyper Ret 6 8 Ret 6 Ret 6 7 9 Ret −7 80
6 Wales Gareth Howell 9 Ret 13 Ret 13 12 Ret 13 7 6 80
7 England Danny Buxton 12 Ret Ret Ret 15 14 13 15 14 Ret 38
8 England Paul Wallace 11 Ret DNS Ret 17 13 12 Ret 13 Ret 37
Production Class (BTC-P)
1 England Luke Hines Ret DNS 15 12 13 13 11 11 18 11 16 13 10 14 18 18 14 17 17 14 243
2 England Alan Blencowe 8 Ret 17 15 15 15 13 12 14 12 15 16 12 15 19 20 16 18 16 17 193
3 England Michael Bentwood 10 11 14 11 16 14 12 14 16 Ret 17 14 Ret DNS 16 17 17 19 18 16 186
4 England Jim Edwards, Jr. 9 12 18 14 Ret 16 14 16 15 14 Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret 15 Ret DNS 15 96
5 England Tom Boardman Ret Ret Ret DNS 12 12 Ret 15 13 DSQ 14 Ret Ret 13 Ret 16 Ret DSQ Ret 13 −60 57
6 England Paul Wallace Ret Ret 16 13 Ret Ret Ret 13 17 13 46
7 England Richard Marsh 18 17 Ret Ret 22 22 20 21 19 19 46
8 England Mark Fullalove 11 Ret 20 19 18 Ret Ret 18 39
9 England Jay Wheals Ret 16 21 21 Ret 20 Ret Ret 27
10 England Chris Ryan 7 Ret Ret Ret 15
11 England Jason Hughes Ret 18 Ret Ret Ret DNS DNS DNS Ret DNS 6
Pos Driver MON Republic of Ireland BHI England THR England SIL England RCK England CRO England SNE England BHI England DON England OUL England Pen. Pts
Colour Result
Gold Winner
Silver 2nd place
Bronze 3rd place
Green Points finish
Blue Non-points finish
Non-classified finish (NC)
Purple Did not finish (Ret)
Red Did not qualify (DNQ)
Did not pre-qualify (DNPQ)
Black Disqualified (DSQ)
White Did not start (DNS)
Withdrew (WD)
Race cancelled (C)
Blank Did not participate
Excluded (EX)
  • Note: bold signifies pole position in class (1 point awarded in first race only), italics signifies fastest lap in class (1 point awarded all races) and * signifies at least one lap in the lead (1 point given all races).

Manufacturers Championship[edit]

Pos Manufacturer MON Republic of Ireland BHI England THR England SIL England RCK England CRO England SNE England BHI England DON England OUL England Pen. Pts
1 Vauxhall / VX Racing 1 1 2 1 1 1 1 1 3 1 2 2 1 10 2 2 2 1 1 2 −10 528
2 2 3 2 3 3 2 2 5 4 3 3 2 Ret 5 5 3 3 3 5
Ret 4 5 3 4 5 7 5 10 6 Ret 6 3 Ret 6 10 6 4 Ret Ret
2 Honda / Honda Racing 3 3 1 7 2 2 4 6 1 7 1 4 4 1 4 3 1 5 2 1 −10 318
Ret 5 7 8 5 10 5 Ret 2 Ret 7 5 6 2 8 7 5 6 12 Ret
Ret Ret DNS DNS 7 11 Ret Ret 4 Ret Ret 12 Ret 5 14 Ret 7 10 Ret DNS
3 MG / MG Sport & Racing 4 Ret 4 4 8 4 3 3 6 2 4 1 5 3 1 1 4 2 4 3 −70 243
Ret Ret 6 5 Ret 6 10 4 8 3 5 7 Ret 4 3 4 19 7 5 4
DNS Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret Ret 8 Ret Ret Ret 10 Ret 8 7 6 Ret 9 6 8
4 Proton / Petronas Syntium Proton 5 9 9 6 14 8 Ret 10 11 8 9 15 9 9 9 8 Ret 12 9 10 75
Ret Ret 10 Ret 17 9 Ret Ret 12 Ret 10 19 Ret Ret Ret 9 Ret Ret Ret DNS
Pos Manufacturer MON Republic of Ireland BHI England THR England SIL England RCK England CRO England SNE England BHI England DON England OUL England Pen. Pts

Touring Teams Championship[edit]

Pos Team MON Republic of Ireland BHI England THR England SIL England RCK England CRO England SNE England BHI England DON England OUL England Pen. Pts
1 VX Racing 1 1 2 1 1 1 1 1 3 1 2 2 1 10 2 2 2 1 1 2 −30 438
2 2 3 2 3 3 2 2 5 4 3 3 2 Ret 5 5 3 3 3 5
2 Honda Racing 3 3 1 7 2 2 4 6 1 7 1 4 4 1 4 3 1 5 2 1 −10 299
Ret 5 7 8 5 10 5 Ret 2 Ret 7 5 6 2 8 7 5 6 12 Ret
3 MG Sport & Racing 4 Ret 4 4 8 4 3 3 6 2 4 1 5 3 1 1 4 2 4 3 −70 216
Ret Ret 6 5 Ret 6 10 4 8 3 5 7 Ret 4 3 4 19 7 5 4
4 Team Petronas 5 9 9 6 14 8 Ret 10 11 8 9 15 9 9 9 8 Ret 12 9 10 70
Ret Ret 10 Ret 17 9 Ret Ret 12 Ret 10 19 Ret Ret Ret 9 Ret Ret Ret DNS
5 Collard Racing 6 7 13 Ret Ret DNS Ret 9 7 5 Ret 8 8 6 Ret Ret 9 16 8 7 −5 45
6 Team Halfords Ret 8 11 10 9 Ret Ret Ret Ret 9 6 Ret Ret 12 12 11 11 14 11 9 −10 26
Ret 10 Ret Ret 10 Ret Ret DNS Ret 10 12 Ret Ret Ret 15 14 13 15 14 Ret
7 GA Motorsports Ret 6 8 Ret 6 Ret 6 7 9 Ret 8 9 Ret 7 10 13 8 8 13 11 −35 18
9 Ret 11 Ret DNS Ret 17 15 12 Ret 15 Ret
8 Synchro Motorsport Ret Ret 12 9 11 7 8 Ret Ret DNS 13 11 7 11 11 Ret 10 11 10 12 −20 10
9 Team Dynamics 13 Ret 13 12 Ret 13 7 6 −5 9
Pos Team MON Republic of Ireland BHI England THR England SIL England RCK England CRO England SNE England BHI England DON England OUL England Pen. Pts

Production Teams Championship[edit]

Pos Team MON Republic of Ireland BHI England THR England SIL England RCK England CRO England SNE England BHI England DON England OUL England Pen. Pts
1 Barwell Motorsport 8 Ret 15 12 13 13 11 11 14 11 15 13 10 14 18 18 14 17 16 14 417
Ret DNS 17 15 15 15 13 12 18 12 16 16 12 15 19 20 16 18 17 17
2 Team Varta 9 12 18 14 12 12 14 15 13 14 14 17 Ret 13 21 16 15 20 19 13 −75 196
Ret Ret Ret DNS Ret 16 Ret 16 15 DSQ 18 Ret Ret 16 22 21 20 21 Ret 15
3 Edenbridge Racing 10 11 14 11 16 14 12 14 16 Ret 17 14 Ret DNS 16 17 17 19 18 16 182
4 GA Motorsports 7 Ret 16 13 Ret Ret Ret 13 17 13 −5 56
Ret Ret Ret Ret
5 Mark Fullalove Racing 11 Ret 20 19 18 Ret Ret 18 39
6 Kartworld Racing Ret 18 Ret Ret Ret DNS DNS DNS Ret DNS 6
Pos Team MON Republic of Ireland BHI England THR England SIL England RCK England CRO England SNE England BHI England DON England OUL England Pen. Pts