Neal Fastest in Donington Test

Matt Neal has set the fastest time at the final BTCC test, run yesterday (March 29) at Donington, before the start of the season

Neal Fastest in Donington Test

Neal's lap, run on the Donington National circuit, belies pre-season rumours that the Integra was struggling with pace and sets up a competitive opening round next week, also to be run at the Leicestershire circuit.

2003 Independent champion Rob Collard was equally impressive in the MG, running just ahead of the previous pace setters Vauxhall and former champion Jason Plato, who is leading SEAT Sport's challenge.

Colin Turkington, a new recruit to the VX Racing stable, was guardedly pleased with his results: "It was a positive test. We tried a few more things on the car and found some improvements that took us in the right direction for the first race.

"It's hard to know how we compare as I don't think everyone shows their hand at the official test, but the car is feeling good and we'll come back with more speed next time."

Mark Proctor was unable to run due to engine problems, while Honda's Dan Eaves completed a few laps for which times were unavailable.

The opening rounds of this year's BTCC series will run on 9-10 April.

BTCC Donington test results:

Pos Driver            Make               Time      Laps
 1. Matt Neal         Honda Integra      1:12.584   41 
 2. Rob Collard       MG ZS              1:12.753   65 
 3. Colin Turkington  Vauxhall Astra     1:12.897   45 
 4. Jason Plato       SEAT Toledo Cupra  1:13.045   38  
 5. Gavin Smith       Vauxhall Astra     1:13.220   64 
 6. Yvan Muller       Vauxhall Astra     1:13.257   53 
 7. Mark Lemmer       Honda Civic        1:13.550   44 
 8. Luke Hines        SEAT Toledo Cupra  1:13.826   48 
 9. James Pickford    SEAT Toledo Cupra  1:13.911   59 
10. Dan Eaves         Honda Integra      No Time 
11. Mark Proctor      Vauxhall Astra     No Time

All Timing Unofficial
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