Gordon Shedden wins penultimate 2011 race to keep title battle alive
|By Kevin Turner||Sunday, October 16th 2011, 14:22 GMT|
Gordon Shedden kept himself in contention for the British Touring Car crown with a win in the penultimate race of the season at Silverstone this afternoon.
Shedden managed to jump Honda team-mate and points leader Matt Neal on the first run to Copse.
Tom Onslow-Cole's Ford Focus also slipped by the second Civic, but Neal remained close. A sideways moment for Onslow-Cole at Brooklands gave Neal the opportunity he needed and he soon closed on Shedden.
Despite pressure from Neal - and having to cope with a restart after Nick Foster's WSR BMW crashed at Woodcote and brought out the safety car - Shedden held on to win. His sixth victory of the season moves him to within six points of Neal going into this afternoon's reversed-grid finale.
Onslow-Cole was a fine third, while Dave Newsham continued his strong weekend with fourth in his Special Tuning Racing SEAT Leon.
Team-mate Tom Boardman stormed from row 12 to sixth, behind Andrew Jordan's Eurotech Vauxhall Vectra.
Many cars were involved in contact, including James Nash's Triple Eight Vauxhall Vectra, Rob Collard's BMW and Daniel Welch's Proton - which ran in the top 10 early on.
Jason Plato is now mathematically out of contention to retain his title. After a puncture in race one, he started 25th and charged through to seventh. That nevertheless leaves him 30 points behind Neal with just 17 on offer.
The reversed-grid draw drew nine, meaning Alex MacDowall will start from pole, with Plato third and the Hondas eighth and ninth.
Pos Driver Car Time 1. Gordon Shedden Honda 26m44.480s 2. Matt Neal Honda + 0.595s 3. Tom Onslow-Cole Ford + 1.242s 4. Dave Newsham SEAT + 2.346s 5. Andrew Jordan Vauxhall + 3.029s 6 Tom Boardman SEAT + 3.495s 7 Jason Plato Chevrolet + 3.963s 8. Tom Chilton Ford + 7.710s 9. Alex MacDowall Chevrolet + 7.727s 10. Daniel Welch Proton + 8.464s 11. Andy Neate Ford + 12.346s 12 Rob Austin Audi + 12.794s 13. Ollie Jackson Vauxhall + 15.496s 14. Liam Griffin Ford + 16.409s 15. James Nash Vauxhall + 17.571s 16. Jeff Smith Vauxhall + 17.752s 17. Lea Wood Honda + 24.351s 18. Chris Swanwick Audi + 24.477s 19 Tony Gilham BMW + 27.532s 20. John George Chevrolet + 27.913s 21. Tony Hughes Toyota + 28.756s 22. Chris James Chevrolet + 45.922s 23. Rob Collard BMW + 1 lap 24 Martin Byford Volkswagen + 1 lap 25. Frank Wrathall Toyota + 2 laps 26. Mat Jackson Ford + 3 laps Retirements: James Thompson Ford 20 laps Nick Foster BMW 13 laps Paul O'Neill Chevrolet 3 laps