Victory boosts Turkington’s title hopes
Team BMR RCIB Insurance racer Colin Turkington produced a fantastic drive to win the final Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship encounter at a sun-kissed Silverstone.
Turkington’s victory ensured there will be five title contenders heading into the season finale at Brands Hatch in two weeks time. Honda’s Gordon Shedden leads the standings by 23 points from Jason Plato, with Turkington a further nine back. Matt Neal and MG Triple Eight Racing’s Andrew Jordan are the other drivers still in with a shout of claiming the 2015 BTCC title.
The final race at Silverstone was the most entertaining of the day, which began with Motorbase Performance’s James Cole wheel-spinning off the line from pole position. This allowed Rob Collard’s BMW to storm into an early lead while Turkington was busy grabbing second as Cole ran wide through Becketts on the opening tour.
Team JCT600 with GardX driver Sam Tordoff was the next driver past Cole but it was the battle for the lead that had the collective crowd on its feet. Turkington reeled in Collard and sliced past the BMW man into Brooklands on lap two as a huge accident happened almost simultaneously down the field.
With a gaggle of midfield cars bulking up through Becketts there was unfortunate contact between Daniel Welch’s Proton and Hunter Abbott’s Audi, which sent the latter firing into the barrier at high speed. A safety car was deployed to enable the marshals to retrieve both stricken cars but the action was soon underway and as intense as ever.
Tordoff’s slim championship hopes were fading despite being in an impressive third so he was trying all he could to muscle his way past team-mate Collard. There was contact behind too as Plato nudged his VW past Cole’s Ford, who then immediately dropped down the order.
Collard allowed Tordoff through in an attempt to let his younger stablemate catch Turkington, but when that didn’t happen the pair reversed places again before the chequered flag to complete the podium position.
A trio of title contenders were next up in the finishing order with Plato, Shedden and Neal taking fourth, fifth and sixth respectively ahead of race one winner Mat Jackson who had stormed through from the back of the grid.
Adam Morgan’s Mercedes also made it past Cole for eighth although the latter could still celebrate his best ever BTCC finish. An eye-catching battle for tenth was eventually won by Aiden Moffat as he fought off the attentions from Tom Ingram’s Toyota and the hard-charging Jordan.
Race 3 result:
1 Colin TURKINGTON (GBR) Team BMR RCIB Insurance
2 Robert COLLARD (GBR) JCT600 Racing with GardX
3 Sam TORDOFF (GBR) JCT600 Racing with GardX
4 Jason PLATO (GBR) Team BMR RCIB Insurance
5 Gordon SHEDDEN (GBR) Honda Yuasa Racing
6 Matt NEAL (GBR) Honda Yuasa Racing
7 Mat JACKSON (GBR) Motorbase Performance
8 Adam MORGAN (GBR) WIX Racing
9 James COLE (GBR) Motorbase Performance
10 Aiden MOFFAT (GBR) Laser Tools Racing
11 Tom INGRAM (GBR) Speedworks Motorsport
12 Andrew JORDAN (GBR) MG 888 Racing
13 Mike BUSHELL (R) (GBR) AmD Tuning.com
14 Martin DEPPER (GBR) Eurotech Racing
15 Tony GILHAM (GBR) RCIB Insurance Racing
16 Josh COOK (R) (GBR) Power Maxed Racing
17 Rob AUSTIN (GBR) Exocet AlcoSense
18 Alex MARTIN (R) (GBR) Dextra Racing
19 Simon BELCHER (GBR) Handy Motorsport
20 Stewart LINES (R) (GBR) Houseman Racing
21 Andy PRIAULX (GBR) Team IHG Rewards Club
22 Nicolas HAMILTON (GBR) AmD Tuning.com
23 Derek P ALMER (R) (GBR) Support Our Paras Racing
24 Aron SMITH (IRL) Team BMR RCIB Insurance
DNF Jack GOFF (GBR) MG 888 Racing
DNF Jeff SMITH (GBR) Eurotech Racing
DNF Daniel WELCH (GBR) Welch Motorsport
DNF Hunter ABBOTT (GBR) Exocet AlcoSense