THE "incredible" backing of thousands of home fans is what Rory Butcher is hoping can give him the edge when he gets behind the wheel this weekend.

Up to 15,000 spectators are expected to descend on Knockhill for two days of thrilling, wheel-to-wheel drama when the Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship makes its annual acceleration into West Fife from Saturday.

The circuit will play host to rounds 22, 23 and 24 of the series and Butcher, whose dad, Derek, is the owner and CEO of Knockhill, remains in contention to challenge for a maiden title.

The 32-year-old, who made his BTCC bow at his home track two years ago, is fifth in the standings, with just two rounds remaining following events this weekend.

After joining him for a spin around the track that will come alive during Sunday's race day, Butcher told Times Sport: "The whole year I've been kinda building up to this one event.

"I think it's very special for any Scottish driver. The Scottish fans only get to see the British Touring Cars live at their home event once a year so, when we do come up, the amount of support we get from the fans is just incredible.

"I'm really excited for that, and just the fact that my sponsors, my friends and my family – who support me and have backed me throughout so many years – are all going to get the opportunity to be here and cheer me on."

When asked if he felt that level of support can bring additional pressure to post good results, Butcher continued: "Naturally, it does.

"You've got a lot of people who are there to support you, and who have helped you along the way. They're all there on that one day, but I can only do what I can do.

"I think I'll perform better if I don't allow that pressure to build up and just enjoy the experience. That's what I need to do; just enjoy the moment.

"When you're leaving the pit lane for the first time on Saturday morning, for free practice, and you've got all the fans around the perimeter of the track, it's great to see Knockhill with such an atmosphere.

"It just completely changes the place for those two days of the year, and I just can't wait."

Seasoned competitors such as championship leader Colin Turkington, and previous winners such as Ashley Sutton, Matt Neal and Jason Plato, are amongst those also bidding for podium places, but does Butcher think that knowing his home circuit – one of the shortest on the calendar, measuring at 1.27 miles – so well gives him an advantage?

"I think it does and it doesn't," he reasoned.

"The one thing with drivers at this level is that they're there because of their ability to adapt and soak in new things. What I've always found is that the top drivers can adapt to Knockhill very quickly and, in some ways, they see the circuit in different ways to you.

"Because I've been here so long, and done so many laps, sometimes you can't see the wood for the trees. They're almost able to take corners in a different way from you and see things in a different light.

"One thing I do know is that I'm really comfortable around the track, and we just have to see what happens in terms of how we are. The car's going to play a big part in how we perform around here.

"We are carrying a good chunk of ballast – 30kg of success ballast because we're fifth in the championship – so that's going to hurt us coming up the hill here, and also into the heavy braking zone at the hairpin.

"It's going to be a very challenging weekend, but let's just hope that support can give me that extra edge!"

Tickets for both Saturday, which will see qualifying and a number of support class races take place, and Sunday are available and for more information, visit