Toyota Gazoo Racing UK’s Rory Butcher claimed victory in the opening Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship race at Silverstone, after getting the better of fellow front-row starter Tom Ingram.

The Ginsters-backed Hyundai of Ingram blasted into the lead off the line as Butcher had to contend with a slippery side of the track, after fluid was dropped by a car from one of the previous support races.

Butcher remained composed and lunged past Ingram’s #80 machine at Brooklands on lap three and he eventually pulled away to take a comfortable victory.

Ingram held on to second until the finish, albeit coming under race-long pressure from the Vauxhall Astra of Daniel Lloyd.

Adrian Flux with Power Maxed Racing’s Lloyd performed brilliantly, as he has done all weekend, to take his first podium since 2018.

Aiden Moffat – fresh from his recent victory at Croft – narrowly missed out on more silverware as he pressured home both Ingram and Lloyd to take fourth.

The next trio ran line astern as BTC Racing’s Josh Cook, Team BMW’s Colin Turkington and Laser Tools Racing’s Ash Sutton took fifth, sixth and seventh respectively, the latter having made a nice mid-race pass on the Team Dynamics-run Honda of Daniel Rowbottom on the approach to Copse.

Team BMW’s Stephen Jelley and Adrian Flux with Power Maxed Racing’s Jason Plato completed the top ten results, as the third manufacturer-backed BMW of Tom Oliphant looked on.

Rory Butcher said: “It was quite interesting sitting on the grid and seeing that massive damp patch there. I just knew that Tom [Ingram] would be quite happy in his car, because he was going to get the better start off the line. I knew that on lap one I wasn’t going to get the lead. But it was nice to have the pace to get back onto Tom’s bumper and get past him. It was just quite an enjoyable race. I’m really enjoying the car this weekend, it’s fantastic.

“I felt confident the first two laps I felt good on the brakes into there, relative to Tom, and then decided to make a move.

“The car probably wont feel quite as good [with 75kg of success ballast] as it did there. But that’s just how it I in this championship, so I’m just going to get the most out of it that I can.”

Tom Ingram said: “It was a cracking move, I let him have it. There was a yellow flag there coming down from a crash that had gone on a couple of laps previous, so I was never going to defend it under a yellow. I sort of let Rory go and thought ‘I’m not going to shut the door.’

“It was a fairly steady race really, nothing too dramatic. Rory has been mega quick this weekend, so I was more than happy to watch the back of his car for the rest of the race and just concentrate on scoring some big points, staying second and scoring as many points as possible. Dan was coming up strong behind and every time he got a little bit closer I could just about cover it off. But I think for the first race it’s just our plan to stay out of trouble and get some good points, it’s just what we needed.”

Dan Lloyd said: “I’m over the moon! Fifth was a great achievement for us yesterday, the best performance in qualifying we’ve had all year, but to move up two positions and get on the podium. It’s been a tough year for us. The team’s worked really hard and I’ve worked really hard. But I’m over the moon. It’s great to get a podium, I’ll really enjoy that trophy.

“It means everything. To be honest, the morale in the team’s been down a few times, because we thought we were going to be stronger this year. We’ve kept working and working, the mechanics last night were here until midnight. So it’s not just me, for the engineers, the sponsors, mechanics, it means a lot! There’s still a lot of improvements to make on the car, we were struggling a bit then and we were holding on but I’m just going to enjoy this at the moment – it’s great!”

2021 Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship – Race 1 – Silverstone

1            Rory BUTCHER (GBR) Toyota Gazoo Racing UK 22 laps
2            Tom INGRAM (GBR) Ginsters EXCELR8 with +3.262s
3            Daniel LLOYD (GBR) Adrian Flux with Power Maxed Racing +3.666s
4            Aiden MOFFAT (GBR) Laser Tools Racing +4.263s
5            Josh COOK (GBR) BTC Racing +6.674s
6            Colin TURKINGTON (GBR) Team BMW +6.929s
7            Ashley SUTTON (GBR) Laser Tools Racing +7.379s
8            Daniel ROWBOTTOM (GBR) Halfords Racing with Cataclean +8.113s
9            Stephen JELLEY (GBR) Team BMW +10.154s
10          Jason PLATO (GBR) Adrian Flux with Power Maxed Racing +10.564s
11          Tom OLIPHANT (GBR) Team BMW +10.757s
12          Ollie JACKSON (GBR) MB Motorsport accelerated by Blue Square +16.981s
13          Chris SMILEY (GBR) Ginsters EXCELR8 with +17.270s
14          Senna PROCTOR (GBR) BTC Racing +17.621s
15          Carl BOARDLEY (GBR) Laser Tools Racing +18.009s
16          Sam OSBORNE (GBR) Racing with Wera & Photon Group +18.763s
17          Árón TAYLOR-SMITH (IRL) Team HARD. with HUB Financial Solutions +19.410s
18          Jack BUTEL (GBR) EXCELR8 with +19.886s
19          Jack GOFF (GBR) Team HARD. with Autobrite Direct +23.460s
20          Tom CHILTON (GBR) Car Gods with Ciceley Motorsport +23.822s
21          Jake HILL (GBR) MB Motorsport accelerated by Blue Square +24.904s
22          Jade EDWARDS (GBR) PHSC with BTC Racing +25.239s
23          Rick PARFITT (GBR) EXCELR8 with +26.015s
24          Nicolas HAMILTON (GBR) ROKiT Racing with iQuoto Online Trading +28.099s
25          Andy NEATE (GBR) Racing with Wera & Photon Group +20 laps
26          Adam MORGAN (GBR) Car Gods with Ciceley Motorsport +21 laps
27          Gordon SHEDDEN (GBR) Halfords Racing with Cataclean +22 laps
28          Sam SMELT (GBR) Toyota Gazoo Racing UK +22 laps
29          Jack MITCHELL (GBR) Team HARD. with Autobrite Direct +22 laps


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