Buddhist lucky charm helped Andy Priaulx to first world touring car win in nine years

Triple world champion Andy Priaulx found strength in higher powers as he celebrated his first world touring car win since 2010 on Sunday, winning the final race of the Macau World Touring Car Cup meeting.

Priaulx, who returns to the world touring car stage this season after nine years away, completed a clean-sweep of Macau victories for Lynk & Co Cyan Racing by fending off countryman Rob Huff for a maiden TCR-era win.

Priaulx’s last victory on the world touring car stage came at Oschersleben during the 2010 WTCC campaign, and the Briton revealed after his Macau win that part of his routine for “levelling control and emotion” was to carry a small figure of Buddha with him to the races.

“I carry it with me all the time,” Priaulx told TouringCarTimes. “We are not allowed to wear any jewellery any more in the races, so I take it with me and keep it in my bag. I’ve always studied meditation and this for me is one of the hardest tracks mentally for any driver. It needs concentration, it needs control, it needs discipline. I’ve had many, many tough races in Macau and I needed to be the strongest in the mind. The Buddha always helped me level my control and my emotion.”

Priaulx said that rather than a strong religious belief, his token of luck was more of a “selfish” thing.

“I just enjoy that philosophy, that approach,” Priaulx said. “I always looked at training for the mind and then I started to study more and more the spiritual side and went down the Buddhism route as purely a selfish way to get the best from myself and give a good vibration to everybody. It’s always helped me in my career.”

Adding in the fact his Macau victory came on the same day his daughter turned 16, Priaulx said the success in the former Portuguese colony was one to remember.

“It’s a special win. All the wins are important, but today I have two lucky charms: I have the Buddha with me and it’s my daughter’s 16th birthday. Every year I miss her birthday. She was born when I was racing in Macau, she came a month early and today’s her 16th birthday, so that was a special win for her.”