Snetterton BTCC: Jason Plato beats Colin Turkington in race one
|By Kevin Turner||Sunday, August 3rd 2014, 11:43 GMT|
Jason Plato beat championship leader Colin Turkington to win the first British Touring Car race at Snetterton as battles raged behind.
Plato's Triple Eight MG led from pole from Turkington, while team-mate Sam Tordoff's challenge lasted only as far as Riches, where he ran off the road before pitting.
A fast-starting Alain Menu thus initially held third. But when the works Honda of Matt Neal dived by Tom Ingram's Speedworks Toyota at Montreal on lap three he quickly moved up to the back of the BMR VW Passat.
As Neal pressured Menu, Aron Smith's VW overtook Ingram at Brundle/Nelson, the Toyota losing enough momentum to be demoted several places. The rookie was running ninth on the final lap when his left front wheel came off and forced him out.
Neal made it by Menu into Murrays on lap four, the VW losing enough speed to allow Smith to draw alongside.
Smith then appeared to swerve at Menu on the main straight. Both continued, with Menu ahead, but Adam Morgan took the opportunity to dive by both into Montreal to snatch fourth in his Ciceley Mercedes.
Morgan then edged towards Neal, but could never get close enough to try a move. The Honda thus completed the podium, albeit more than 12 seconds behind second-placed Turkington.
Menu defeated Smith to take fifth, while Shedden - up from 11th on the grid in his Civic Tourer - took the flag close behind the second BMR machine.
Mat Jackson was the lead Motorbase Ford Focus driver in eighth, his team-mate Fabrizio Giovanardi coming home 13th after starting from the back.
Rob Collard also came through well, finishing ninth in his WSR BMW from row 10, while Jack Goff's Passat was the top soft-tyred runner in 10th.
After being allowed to start from the pitlane following his free practice crash, reigning champion Andrew Jordan just missed out on a point as he came through to 16th.
Results - 12 laps: Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap 1. Jason Plato MG 23m500.060s 2. Colin Turkington WSR BMW +1.924s 3. Matt Neal Honda +14.185s 4. Adam Morgan Ciceley Mercedes +15.194s 5. Alain Menu BMR VW +17.686s 6. Aron Smith BMR VW +18.954s 7. Gordon Shedden Honda +19.590s 8. Mat Jackson Motorbase Ford +21.042s 9. Rob Collard WSR BMW +21.337s 10. Jack Goff BMR VW +23.038s 11. Rob Austin RAR Audi +27.651s 12. Warren Scott BMR VW +29.344s 13. Fabrizio Giovanardi Motorbase Ford +29.670s 14. Glynn Geddie UA Toyota +40.359s 15. Robb Holland Rotek Audi +40.899s 16. Andrew Jordan Eurotech Honda +41.239s 17. Martin Depper Eurotech Honda +41.487s 18. Marc Hynes MG +41.633s 19. Jack Clarke Motorbase Ford +43.286s 20. Hunter Abbott RAR Audi +44.729s 21. Lea Wood Houseman Toyota +46.889s 22. James Cole UA Toyota +48.245s 23. Aiden Moffat Moffat Chevrolet +53.131s 24. Ollie Jackson Welch Proton +55.446s 25. Simon Belcher Handy Toyota +1m33.921s 26. Dave Newsham AmD Ford +2m02.181s Retirements: Tom Ingram Speedworks Toyota 11 laps Dan Welch Welch Proton 8 laps Chris Stockton BTC Chevrolet 8 laps Nick Foster WSR BMW 8 laps Sam Tordoff MG 8 laps