Oulton 1: Thommo wins, Muller is champ

Yvan Muller is the British touring car champion for 2003. Although James Thompson did all he could to prevent it happening by winning the first race at Oulton Park's Island circuit, there was nothing he could do to stop Muller taking third spot and thus securing his first (and long-awaited) BTCC title

Oulton 1: Thommo wins, Muller is champ

Thompson led from start to finish in his Vauxhall Astra, surviving both the traditional early safety car period and the round of pit stops for a well-judged victory. Muller was sixth on lap one and did well to scrape his way back onto the podium.

"Those were the longest 25 laps of my life," said an extremely chuffed Muller.

The Frenchman's cause was helped by a persistent misfire for Matt Neal and an early breakdown for Paul O'Neill. But he could do nothing about Alan Morrison, who made a blinding start and stayed second for the full distance. Morrison finished 1.5 seconds behind Thompson but about six in front of Muller.

The pace car was out on lap two after Tom Chilton lost control of his Honda (his tyres were wet after a first lap excursion) and took out Jay Wheals and Mark Fullalove. It then circulated one lap longer than scheduled when O'Neill's car ground to a halt.

Warren Hughes came home fourth, heading his two sister MG machines of Anthony Reid and Colin Turkington.

Gareth Howell took his first win in the independents category, and in the production class there was another début winner, Alan Blencowe. Blencowe jumped into the class lead after the late retirement of Tom Boardman.

shares
comments
Oulton qualifying: Thommo fights on

Previous article

Oulton qualifying: Thommo fights on

Next article

Oulton 2: Neal puts a seal on 2003

Oulton 2: Neal puts a seal on 2003
Load comments
The outright tin-top wins achieved by a forgotten tin-top great Plus

The outright tin-top wins achieved by a forgotten tin-top great

Already established as a formidable force in the British Saloon Car Championship, the Triumph Dolomite became a legend in 1977 when Tony Dron's Broadspeed machine frequently embarrassed the mighty Capris

BTCC
May 18, 2021
Five key plotlines to follow in the 2021 BTCC Plus

Five key plotlines to follow in the 2021 BTCC

It’s been a busy silly season in the BTCC since the chequered flag fell to end the 2020 campaign last November. While last year’s top two have stayed put, there’s plenty of talking points elsewhere, which should result in another fascinating year of tin-top action

BTCC
May 7, 2021
The giantkilling 'dad and lad' operation taking on the BTCC's best Plus

The giantkilling 'dad and lad' operation taking on the BTCC's best

The Lancashire squad of Ciceley Motorsport has been a BTCC race winner for several years with Adam Morgan and Mercedes. But the switch to WSR-built BMWs and addition of Tom Chilton as a true barometer for Morgan should see the team step up into title contention

BTCC
May 6, 2021
How a returning champion is feeling at home again in the BTCC Plus

How a returning champion is feeling at home again in the BTCC

After topping the times at the end of British Touring Car Championship pre-season testing, it feels like Gordon Shedden has never been away. But after plenty of changes behind the scenes, the three-time champion is bedding himself in to pick up where he left off

BTCC
May 5, 2021
Why a BTCC legend remains defiant at '97 not out' Plus

Why a BTCC legend remains defiant at '97 not out'

After a year of enforced absence from the British Touring Car Championship grid, Jason Plato is back and hungrier than ever. Despite stellar opposition and some familiar challenges, the two-time champion still has his eyes focused on the biggest prizes

BTCC
May 4, 2021
How Ingram's clean slate can end his BTCC title wait Plus

How Ingram's clean slate can end his BTCC title wait

After seven years together, Tom Ingram and Speedworks Motorsport have amicably split and gone down separate paths for the 2021 BTCC season. With engineer Spencer Aldridge joining him at the Excelr8 Motorsport Hyundai squad, Ingram is confident he can challenge for titles from the off

BTCC
Apr 30, 2021
How the unlikely Capri-slaying Dolomite triumphed against adversary Plus

How the unlikely Capri-slaying Dolomite triumphed against adversary

The Dolomite Sprint was a potent giantkilling weapon during the 1970s in the British Saloon Car Championship, now known as the BTCC. Tin-top legend Andy Rouse explains how it became such a force

BTCC
Apr 25, 2021
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