The Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship produced another entertaining three races this past weekend (6/7 May) with the series descending on Thruxton for rounds seven, eight and nine.
Taking to the fastest circuit on the calendar, the latest chapter in the BTCC proved to be as dramatic and fraught as usual, with the traditional thrills and spills also in full view for everyone.
The opening 16-lap encounter proved to be a low key affair with Matt Neal converting his lap record worthy pole position into a lead he would ultimately never lose.
Launching his Halfords Yuasa Racing Type R off the line, the triple champion resisted an early challenge from his team-mate Gordon Shedden to take his maiden win of the season. In doing so, he also equalled Andy Rouse on the all-time winners list.
Further back the action was frenetic with Jack Goff making it a Type R 1-2-3 as he clinched his first podium with Eurotech Racing.
From the calm of race one came the chaos of race two and a red flag littered round eight. Off the line it was to be Neal that established an early lead but that was soon to be scuppered by a safety car which then became a race stoppage.
Upon arriving at Church Corner on the opening tour, contact between Senna Proctor, Aron Taylor-Smith and Daniel Lloyd left the latter hitting the barrier hard and causing substantial damage. thankfully Lloyd walked away from the incident unhurt.
Following a lengthy wait, racing got back underway with Rob Collard making a lightening start to challenge Neal and Shedden. Making his way up to second, the West Surrey Racing driver inherited the lead from Neal who was forced to pit due to a power steering issue. From there Collard extended his lead and would have taken the chequered flag had it not been for a second red flag – this time due to Martin Depper having a heavy crash at Village Corner.
The reverse grid encounter saw Team BMW further underline their superiority around the 2.3 mile Hampshire circuit as Colin Turkington notched his second victory of the season and with it, the German marques 100th in the BTCC.
Producing a measured drive from pole position, the double champion led all 16 laps as Tom Ingram claimed a second podium of the day to extend his advantage at the summit of the championship standings further. Rounding out the podium to also claim a second rostrum finish of the day was Goff.
Defending champion Shedden was in fine form to add a fourth to his two second place finishes earlier in the day, allowing him to become the Speedworks drivers’ nearest challenger in the championship standings.
For the full classification from all three races today, click here.