Onslow-Cole takes maiden win

Tom Onslow-Cole scored his first British Touring Car Championship victory in the third race at Snetterton

Onslow-Cole takes maiden win

The rookie's win provided consolation for Team RAC after his teammate Colin Turkington had lost his race one victory for being underweight.

Onslow-Cole led the majority of the race, first under pressure from Mat Jackson, then from championship leader Jason Plato, before an incident between the chasing pair suddenly handed the RAC BMW a four-second lead with just two laps to go.

The opening laps had seen an eight-car train jostling for the lead, as Jackson, Plato, Fabrizio Giovanardi, Matt Neal, Darren Turner, Turkington and Shedden lined up behind Onslow-Cole.

Once Plato had managed to resist title rival Giovanardi's early overtaking attempts, he was able to focus on the two BMW-driving rookies ahead, and got between them on lap seven when an abortive move on Onslow-Cole saw Jackson go wide.

Giovanardi tried to pass Jackson a lap later, but a brush with the BMW putting the works Vauxhall into a high speed slide. Although the Italian recovered without losing any places, he briefly lost touch with the lead group.

Plato shadowed Onslow-Cole until the final laps, when he began to make a more concerted bid for the lead.

But as he did so Jackson saw an opportunity to retake second, and tried to pass Plato into the Esses. As they made contact, Giovanardi attempted to pass both, only to become entangled with Plato - allowing Neal to sweep past all three and move from fifth to second in a single move.

That gave Onslow-Cole a crucial break, and he duly pulled away to take his maiden win. Neal came home 2.7 seconds behind in second, with Giovanardi recovering to third ahead of Plato and Shedden.

Jackson ended up bouncing across the grass in the Plato/Giovanardi tangle and dropped back to finish seventh behind Turkington. Tom Chilton, Turner and Eoin Murray's privateer Alfa Romeo completed the top ten.

Classified:

Pos  Driver            Make        Time
 1.  Tom Onslow-Cole   BMW         22:07.246
 2.  Matt Neal         Honda       +   2.701
 3.  F.Giovanardi      Vauxhall    +   3.252
 4.  Jason Plato       SEAT        +   3.908
 5.  Gordon Shedden    Honda       +   4.968
 6.  Colin Turkington  BMW         +   5.521
 7.  Mat Jackson       BMW         +   5.713
 8.  Tom Chilton       Vauxhall    +   6.993
 9.  Darren Turner     SEAT        +   8.536
10.  Eoin Murray       Alfa Romeo  +   9.904
11.  Erkut Kizilirmak  Vauxhall    +  24.363
12.  Tom Ferrier       SEAT        +  24.858
13.  Jason Hughes      MG          +  25.642
14.  Chris Stockton    Lexus       +  32.971
15.  Simon Blanckley   Honda       +  37.422
16.  Martyn Bell       BMW         +  41.378
17.  John George       Honda       +  44.091

Not Classified:

     Driver            Make        Laps
     Matt Allison      SEAT         14
     David Pinkney     Alfa Romeo    6

Fastest lap: Shedden, 1:12.398 on lap 3
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Giovanardi wins eventful race two
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