Jason Plato won the first British Touring Car race of the weekend at Snetterton.
The works MG6 jumped polesitter Frank Wrathall's Dynojet Toyota Avensis at the start and was followed through by the ES Racing Vauxhall Vectra of Dave Newsham.
Newsham put Plato under pressure either side of a long safety car period, caused by a clash between Adam Morgan (Speedworks Toyota) and series newcomer Robb Holland's Tony Gilham Racing Honda Civic.
After the restart, on lap nine of 15, Newsham used the straightline speed of the S2000 Vectra to challenge Plato on the run to Riches. But Plato defended the inside and Newsham ran wide, allowing Wrathall to snatch second.
As Plato maintained a two-second advantage, Newsham tried to fight back, but gradually fell away as his tyres went off.
Andrew Jordan, who had run fourth throughout in his Eurotech Honda Civic, then closed on Newsham. He forced his way by at Williams on the final lap, was repassed by the Vectra on the Bentley Straight, then tapped the back of Newsham at Nelson to secure third place on the road.
Further back, championship leader Matt Neal shot from seventh to fifth early on. The works Honda did not have the pace to get further forward and swapped places with Daniel Welch's impressive Proton a couple of times before securing the spot.
Welch held off Tom Onslow-Cole's WSR BMW for seventh, while Rob Collard's BMW - which had also been in the fight - pulled off on the final lap.
Gordon Shedden drove a fine race to come through from the back, following all his problems in practice and qualifying, to finish right behind the BMW in eighth.
Mat Jackson gave the NGTC Motorbase Ford Focus its debut. He climbed through the field from row eight and overtook Lea Wood's Vectra for ninth on the final tour.
Results - 15 laps: Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap 1. Jason Plato MG 33m10.134s 2. Frank Wrathall Dynojet Toyota + 1.834s 3. Andrew Jordan Eurotech Honda + 6.764s 4. Dave Newsham ES Vauxhall + 7.273s 5. Matt Neal Honda + 13.072s 6. Daniel Welch Welch Proton + 17.363s 7. Tom Onslow-Cole WSR BMW + 17.873s 8. Gordon Shedden Honda + 18.288s 9. Mat Jackson Motorbase Ford + 19.298s 10. Lea Wood Central Vauxhall + 19.715s 11. Jeff Smith Eurotech Honda + 21.271s 12. Nick Foster WSR BMW + 23.798s 13. Rob Austin Austin Audi + 30.101s 14. Tony Gilham Thorney Vauxhall + 31.404s 15. Aron Smith Motorbase Ford + 32.085s 16. Andy Neate MG + 53.087s 17. Tony Hughes Speedworks Toyota + 53.401s Retirements: Rob Collard WSR BMW 14 laps Ollie Jackson AmD Volkswagen 11 laps Chris James ES Vauxhall 11 laps Adam Morgan Speedworks Toyota 2 laps Robb Holland Gilham Honda 2 laps