Eaves Doubles Up

Dan Eaves roared to his second British Touring Car Championship victory of the day at Thruxton on Sunday with a dominant display from pole position, as Team Halfords Honda team-mate Matt Neal had a major fight on his hands to grab the second spot

Eaves Doubles Up

Despite having the full amount of ballast, Eaves got away cleanly from pole position and found himself with a pretty comfortable lead as the field came out of the Complex, after the chasing Jason Plato and Matt Neal made light contact.

That incident not only cost the two drivers time because it also allowed Yvan Muller, who had originally started sixth, to grab the second spot.

Plato was eager to wrest that second spot back from Muller and on lap two he made his move on the run down to the Chicane. The SEAT driver dummied to the outside before diving down the inside under braking, but the manoeuvre ended in an almost inevitable collision.

Muller found himself getting pushed sideways by Plato in his bid to keep the place and, after being spun almost 90 degrees, he somehow managed to keep his foot in and hang onto the place.

The battling between Muller and Plato allowed Neal to get back into contention and on lap nine the championship leader made his move for third at Goodwood after Plato ran a little bit wide.

Plato tried to shut the door but in the subsequent collision he came off worst as he was nudged wide and lost ground - allowing Neal to take third place and James Pickford to move up to fourth.

Neal did not look back, however, and set about chasing down main title rival Muller. On lap 14, after several half attempts, Neal made his move through Goodwood to grab second - but it was too late for him to do anything about closing down on race winner Eaves.

Muller held onto third, ahead of Pickford and Plato, who managed to resist late-race pressure from the hard-charging Tom Chilton.

BTCC Race Result, Thruxton - Round Five

Pos Driver Make Time Laps Gap 1. Dan Eaves Honda Integra 21:35.659 16 2. Matt Neal Honda Integra 21:36.515 16 + 0.856 3. Yvan Muller Vauxhall Astra Sport 21:38.166 16 + 2.507 4. James Pickford SEAT Toledo Cupra 21:39.485 16 + 3.826 5. Jason Plato SEAT Toledo Cupra 21:42.633 16 + 6.974 6. Tom Chilton Honda Civic Type-R 21:42.932 16 + 7.273 7. Colin Turkington Vauxhall Astra Sport 21:43.445 16 + 7.786 8. Luke Hines SEAT Toledo Cupra 21:50.669 16 + 15.010 9. James Kaye Honda Civic Type-R 21:56.462 16 + 20.803 10. Gavin Smith Vauxhall Astra Sport 21:58.572 16 + 22.913 11. Rob Collard MG ZS 22:01.455 16 + 25.796 Fastest Lap: Dan Eaves 1:19.302
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