Muller Claims Round 2 in Donington

Yvan Muller made up for his earlier disappointment to grab victory in the second round of the British Touring Car Championship at Donington Park on Sunday - but he had to face pressure all the way to the chequered flag

Muller Claims Round 2 in Donington

The Frenchman had lost out in the day's first race after a last-lap lunge from Honda rival Matt Neal, and was clearly determined not to suffer a repeat in the second heat.

At the lights Muller stormed into the lead while Neal, starting from pole position, failed to get away well and dropped to third behind a hard-charging Rob Collard in the MG.

The first three ran nose to tail for the opening laps before Neal dived down the inside of Collard at Redgate on lap four, but just did not have enough to seize the place. The Honda and MG ran side-by-side all the way down the Craner Curves before Neal made the move stick and grabbed second at the Old Hairpin.

That incident allowed Muller some clear air at the front - and he was further boosted a few laps later when Collard grabbed second spot in a repeat of the Neal overtaking move. He dived down the inside at Redgate, braved it out down the Craner Curves and moved ahead at the Old Hairpin.

Once into second Collard began to close the gap on Muller but, despite getting right on his bumper on the final lap, he ran out of time to get past. The result was nevertheless a great one for Collard, who claimed his first ever BTCC podium.

Neal eventually finished third overall, ahead of Honda team-mate Dan Eaves and SEAT's Jason Plato - who had earlier been involved in an opening lap incident down the Craner Curves that had forced Vauxhall's Colin Turkington out of the race.

With the grid positions reversed for the third race of the day, Richard Williams will start from pole position in his Lexus, which had not even turned a wheel until the start of the race meeting.

Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship, Donington - Round 2
 Pos Driver Make Time Laps Gap 1. Yvan Muller Vauxhall Astra Sport Hatch 19:46.651 16 2. Rob Collard MG ZS 19:46.830 16 + 0.179 3. Matt Neal Honda Integra 19:47.951 16 + 1.300 4. Dan Eaves Honda Integra 19:52.831 16 + 6.180 5. Jason Plato SEAT Toledo Cupra 19:53.472 16 + 6.821 6. Gavin Smith Vauxhall Astra Sport Hatch 19:53.687 16 + 7.036 7. James Pickford SEAT Toledo Cupra 20:00.955 16 +14.304 8. Luke Hines SEAT Toledo Cupra 20:01.249 16 +14.598 9. Richard Williams Lexus IS200 19:56.560 15 +1 LAP Not Classified Mark Proctor Vauxhall Astra Coupe 9:45.416 7 D.N.F. Colin Turkington Vauxhall Astra Sport Hatch 3:04.445 2 D.N.F. James Kaye Honda Civic Type-R 15:46.350 1 D.N.F. Fastest Lap Rob Collard MG ZS 1:13.229
shares
comments
Neal Takes Surprise Victory

Previous article

Neal Takes Surprise Victory

Next article

Neal Claims Second Win in Round Three

Neal Claims Second Win in Round Three
Load comments

About this article

Series BTCC
Author Jonathan Noble
The rollercoaster ride of West Surrey Racing's 40 years Plus

The rollercoaster ride of West Surrey Racing's 40 years

It’s four decades since one of UK motorsport’s most successful teams made its debut at Silverstone in British Formula 3. Now it’s top dog in the BTCC, time to blow out some candles with boss Dick Bennetts

BTCC
Mar 12, 2021
Why the BTCC elite should fear Shedden's return Plus

Why the BTCC elite should fear Shedden's return

OPINION: The British Touring Car Championship Lord taketh away Dan Cammish, then giveth Gordon Shedden. That means substituting what would have been a future champion with an all-time series great with a point to prove on his return

BTCC
Mar 11, 2021
The tin-top veteran turned policeman hangs up his helmet Plus

The tin-top veteran turned policeman hangs up his helmet

Jeff Allam had a long and successful touring car career, and was a highly regarded works driver for Rover and Vauxhall. Then he spent his weekends policing his successors… Time to look back at a BTCC life spanning almost 45 years

BTCC
Mar 10, 2021
The BTCC Brexit that's thrived for a decade Plus

The BTCC Brexit that's thrived for a decade

It won't be long until the current BTCC rules become the longest-lasting the series has ever had. The NGTC regulations are due to celebrate their tenth birthday this year and while not totally perfect for everyone, have been a huge success

BTCC
Feb 24, 2021
The top 10 BTCC drivers of 2020 Plus

The top 10 BTCC drivers of 2020

The 2020 British Touring Car Championship will go down as a classic in which new winners graced the top step of the podium and an unloved chassis was resurrected into a champion. But who were the year's top performers?

BTCC
Dec 24, 2020
The Villeneuve-esque 'engineer's dream' who lit up BTCC 2020 Plus

The Villeneuve-esque 'engineer's dream' who lit up BTCC 2020

The Infiniti Q50 was completely redesigned, redeveloped and revamped by BMR and Laser Tools Racing for 2020. And the flamboyant brilliance of the driver behind the wheel was enough to snatch the title at the last gasp

BTCC
Dec 11, 2020
The BMW game-changer that monopolised the tin-top world Plus

The BMW game-changer that monopolised the tin-top world

The rival Ford RS500 was more spectacular and almost claimed its place as Autosport's greatest touring car. But the original BMW M3 E30 was too good and too important to be ignored, as its drivers explain

BTCC
Dec 1, 2020
Turkington meets Rouse: The BTCC's greatest in conversation Plus

Turkington meets Rouse: The BTCC's greatest in conversation

The two four-time British Touring Car champions discovered they had far more in common than they realised when Autosport brought them together to discuss all things tin-top for its 70th anniversary special earlier this year

BTCC
Nov 25, 2020