WEEKEND WRAP-UP: SNETTERTON
For today’s BTCC Weekend Wrap-Up we’re reliving Snetterton’s trio of encounters as the Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship headed to the Norfolk circuit back in June…
BTCC BIG GUNS HIT THE FRONT AT SNETTERTON
Win apiece for Turkington, Sutton and Ingram as fans return
Colin Turkington, Ash Sutton and Tom Ingram claimed a win apiece in front of returning spectators at Snetterton (12/13 June), as the trio also moved into the top three positions of the overall Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship standings.
The perennial contenders had endured mixed fortunes during the opening race weekend at Thruxton in May, but bounced back in style around the 2.97-mile Norfolk circuit.
Team BMW’s Turkington repelled an early attack from Ginsters EXCELR8 with TradePriceCars.com’s Ingram to take his first victory of the season in the opening race.
Snetterton – basked in glorious sunshine throughout the weekend – also saw the return of the Goodyear ‘Option’ tyre, and the vast majority of the front-runners chose to utilise softer rubber for the first contest.
Ingram made a stellar effort on the opening tour as he hauled his Hyundai i30N alongside Turkington’s BMW 3 Series on no fewer than two occasions, but the four-time champion held firm whilst getting temperature into the tyres of his rear-wheel drive machine.
The lead duo traded fastest laps later in the bout, but in truth, Turkington was able to keep Ingram at arm’s length until the chequered flag – scoring an important win in the process and the 155th podium of his BTCC career.
Rory Butcher claimed a lonely third place, but it was a promising first 2021 podium for the Scotsman after his off-season switch to Toyota Gazoo Racing UK.
Sutton’s success was a completely different story as the Laser Tools Racing driver surged to victory, having started a lowly 11th on the grid in the second race.
The reigning champion made pass after pass in his striking #1 Infiniti Q50 and his impressive performance was confirmed when a late overtake on race-long leader Turkington clinched his second victory of the campaign.
The final place on the podium went to MB Motorsport accelerated by Blue Square’s Ollie Jackson after he came out on top of a fantastic battle with the Ginsters-backed Hyundai of Ingram.
Jackson looked to have lost out when Ingram nipped past late on, but the two-time race-winner would not be denied as he fought back to repass in the closing stages.
Ginsters EXCELR8 with TradePriceCars.com then scored its maiden BTCC victory, and the first-ever win for Hyundai machinery in the UK’s premier motorsport series, as Ingram took a popular triumph in the reversed-grid contest.
Ingram had to muscle his way past pole-sitter Stephen Jelley shortly after mid-distance as the leading BMW ran wide through turn one, before the positions were finally confirmed through the right-hand hairpin.
Infiniti man Sutton and Halfords Racing with Cataclean’s Gordon Shedden also bullied their way past the fading Team BMW car of Jelley, as their own battle intensified towards the finish.
Sutton held onto second – moving to the standings’ summit in the process – whilst Shedden grabbed his first podium since returning to the BTCC.
There was another positive story in the final race as PHSC with BTC Racing’s Jade Edwards became the first female to score a championship point since Fiona Leggate in 2006, as the Honda driver finished 15th.
As the dust settled at a scorching Snetterton, Sutton now leads the Drivers’ standings by two points from Ingram, with Turkington a further three in arrears.
Leaving Norfolk, it was BMW heading the Manufacturers’/Constructors’ order whilst rivals Laser Tools Racing topped the Teams’ tables.
Unsurprisingly, Ingram and his Ginsters EXCELR8 with TradePriceCars.com squad held the advantage in the fight for Independents’ honours, while Halfords Racing with Cataclean driver Daniel Rowbottom claimed Jack Sears Trophy success at Snetterton.