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Turkington heads a Team BMR podium lockout at Snetterton

Sunday, August 09 2015

Reigning Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Champion Colin Turkington has won the opening race of the day at Snetterton, heading an all-Team BMR podium completed by Aron Smith and Jason Plato.

Despite a poor getaway from Smith, the BMR cars remained in qualifying formation into Riches, but Rob Collard's Snetterton jinx returned, leaving the WSR BMW touring back to the pits. As the field filed through the final turns of the opening lap, Turkington led Smith, Plato, Andrew Jordan, Matt Neal, Andy Priaulx, Jack Goff and Dave Newsham.

Making progress on the opening lap was Shedden up to 12th place, and on the second tour, Newsham put Goff under pressure a handful of places ahead of the championship leader. Both he and Adam Morgan passed the MG, whilst in the other car, Jordan was hanging onto the BMR trio, where Turkington had posted fastest lap to put him in a good position on the grid for race two. The reigning champion was using his soft tyres to pull out a gap of more than two seconds from his team-mates, giving his most convincing performance since signing for the squad.

The race remained well-behaved for its first half, then Priaulx kicked off the second part by attacking Neal, and coming under pressure from Morgan, who had cleared Newsham for seventh place. With the leading Honda now backing up the field, Priaulx forced his way past at Bomb Hole, and with the BMW almost five seconds behind the leading quartet, Jordan worked on finding a way past Plato to threaten the prospect of an all-BMR podium.

Both Hondas were struggling in the later laps, since Shedden was also losing places, first to Tom Ingram, then the BMR of Warren Scott and Motorbase Ford of Mat Jackson. He was faring better than Nicolas Hamilton, however, who made contact with the barrier after tangling with Stewart Lines.

On the final lap, Priaulx had managed to bridge the gap to the leaders and joined the queue behind Plato. With the double champion a master of defensive driving, it was no surprise to see the MG come under the strongest attack, but it was too late and the order remained to the flag.

The winner's fastest lap remained to the end to place him on pole for race two, with Tordoff joining him on the front row, then Morgan and Goff on row two, followed by Plato and Priaulx. The race will commence at 2:35pm.

Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship race one
1, Colin Turkington, Team BMR, VW CC, 12 Laps
2, Aron Smith, Team BMR, VW CC, +1.706s
3, Jason Plato, Team BMR, VW CC, +2.651s
4, Andrew Jordan, MG Racing, MG6 GT, +3.442s
5, Andy Priaulx, WSR, BMW 125i M-Sport, +3.732s
6, Matt Neal, Honda Racing, Civic Type R, +8.340s
7, Adam Morgan, WIX Racing, Mercedes A-Class, +9.372s
8, Dave Newsham, Power Maxed Racing, Chevrolet Cruze, +9.848s
9, Jack Goff, MG Racing, MG6 GT, +10.045s
10, Tom Ingram, Speedworks, Toyota Avensis, +11.206s

Click here for the full result.

Raceday tickets for the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship at Snetterton on 8/9 August are available on the gate for £32, with free entry for under-13s. For more information call 0843 453 9000 or click here.