Article from http://www.btccpages.com by Matt Lamprell
Second Silverstone win for Plato takes title to wire
Jason Plato scored a spectacular second win of the day in the final race at Silverstone, ensuring that the title will be decided at the final meeting of the season at Brands Hatch.
- 20th to first for Plato
- Neal’s disastrous weekend continues with third DNF
- Shedden claims sixth to retain points lead
Plato started 20th on the grid, but just as Mat Jackson managed in race two, the MG KX Momentum driver worked his way through the pack to claim victory at the end of the 22-lap race.
Ebay Motors’ Nick Foster started the race from pole position, thanks to the top 10 finishers from race two being reversed to form the grid for the final race of the day. Foster held the lead off the line, with Andrew Jordan in second for Pirtek Racing.
Rob Austin and Daniel Welch moved past Jordan to go second and third respectively, before coming together to drop down the order as early as the third lap of the race.
Plato’s early progress was impressive. Lap six saw him pass Tom Onslow-Cole to take sixth position. The next time around he was past Newsham for fifth, and it was just one more lap before he took fourth from Jordan.
The next target for Plato was championship leader Gordon Shedden. The championship battle was playing out on track for a few minutes, before Shedden conceded and Plato claimed the spot.
That was a podium spot secured for Plato, but there were still two BMWs ahead of him. Foster continued to lead the race ahead of teammate Rob Collard. Unsurprisingly given the pace he had shown so far in the race, Plato made light work of the two eBay Motors cars, taking the lead at the start of lap 12.
The only driver who looked like taking the challenge to Plato was race two winner Mat Jackson. The Redstone Racing star started the race from tenth and while the extra 45kg of ballast he was carrying after his win had clearly slowed him down, he managed to climb to second behind Plato.
Plato’s pace at the front proved too much even for Jackson. Victory went to the MG KX Momentum racer – his sixth of the season. It could prove a crucial result in the championship, with Shedden down in sixth and Matt Neal failing to finish.
Neal’s weekend to forget ended with a third straight point-less finish. This time he ended up off the track after contact with Lea Wood.
Plato celebrated his victory with his Triple Eight team, who completed a speedy engine change ahead of the race. Jackson claimed second place behind the MG, with Collard, Foster and Tom Onslow-Cole making it a 3-4-5 for eBay Motors. Shedden had to settle for sixth, ahead of Jordan in seventh and Adam Morgan in eighth. Rob Austin and Aron Smith completed the top ten.
Jason Plato said, “That sort of thing has happened to me a few times in my career. It’s been a good weekend, but it could have been even better. If we hadn’t had that problem, I think we could have left here in the lead. The MG is going to be a potent weapon at Brands Hatch.”
Gordon Shedden said, “I’ve just had no straight line speed all weekend. Hopefully with the way the rules work, we’ll get some boost back for Brands. We really need it. I’ll got to Brands full of confidence, though.”
Matt Neal said, “What a frustrating weekend. It looks like I might be Flash’s wingman going into Brands. And I can be a good wingman. Getting Honda across the line first is our priority.”
Gordon Shedden leads the championship on 364 points, ahead of Plato on 349 and Neal on 333.
The final rounds of the 2012 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship take place at Brands Hatch on 20/12 October.
By Renis B