Honda’s Gordon Shedden has successfully defended his Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship crown after a thrilling final-day fight at Brands Hatch today.
The Scot finished ahead of rival Sam Tordoff in the final race of the season to become the first man to claim back-to-back championship wins since Fabrizio Giovanardi for Vauxhall in 2007/08.
Earlier in the day, Subaru Levorg driver Colin Turkington had charged back into contention for the British Touring Car Championship crown by winning the first and second races of the showdown weekend.
No fewer than eight drivers came to the Kent circuit’s Grand Prix layout with a mathematical chance of winning the tin-top title, although former champion Turkington’s hopes looked fairly slim on paper. His strong start to his weekend, allied to some of his chief rivals struggling with the effects of success ballast on the race pace of their cars, has given him a more realistic chance of the crown.
On Saturday Turkington claimed pole position after the Silverline Subaru BMR Racing driver produced an incredible lap time in an incident-packed wet-dry qualifying session.
Tom Ingram qualified second but his Toyota Avensis failed ride-height checks and he was banished to the back of the grid. That left Rob Austin second on the grid in another Avensis, with Turkington’s Subaru Levorg team-mate Jason Plato in third.
Of the other title protagonists, Gordon Shedden lined up seventh in his Honda Civic Type R, Sam Tordoff (BMW 125i M Sport) tenth, Matt Neal (Civic Type R) 11th, Rob Collard 12th (BMW 125i M Sport), Andrew Jordan (Ford Focus) 13th and Mat Jackson (Ford Focus) 19th.
As the first of three races got underway on dry track on Sunday morning, Turkington resisted a lap one attack from Austin to retain the lead, with Plato slotting in to third.