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Jason Plato takes the spoils in race two

Sunday, June 06 2010

Jason Plato steered a rather battered Silverline Chevrolet Cruze to victory in race two of the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship at Oulton Park today (Sunday) following a panel-bashing battle with the Team Aon Ford Focus of Tom Onslow-Cole.

It was race one winner Onslow-Cole that held the advantage off the start line, as WSR's Rob Collard caused opening lap chaos when his BMW 320si was tapped into a spin at Island Bend by Team Aon's Tom Chilton. This incident affected several drivers including Collard's team-mate Andy Neate, who was forced to pit with a right front puncture.

There was also early drama for race one podium finisher Honda Racing's Gordon Shedden, who slowed suddenly on lap two with a drive shaft problem. This promoted Mat Jackson to second position and Plato into third, until Plato overtook Jackson at Island Bend following a close battle between the pair.

As Plato began to chase down Tom Onslow-Cole, his main championship rival Honda's Matt Neal scythed his way past Tom Chilton and Mat Jackson to join the hunt for victory.

With Neal closing in, Plato and Onslow-Cole became locked in a tense battle that culminated in Plato running into the back of his Ford rival before passing Onslow-Cole at Island Bend for the lead in a heavily dented Chevrolet. Neal also took advantage of the bumper crunching incident to overtake the Ford Focus, but light rainfall towards the end of the race meant he was unable to catch Plato before the chequered flag.

Race two's result means that Plato regains the championship lead from Neal by a slender three point margin.

Onslow-Cole ultimately secured third position, with Airwaves BMW pairing Mat Jackson and Steven Kane in fourth and fifth respectively.

It was another disappointing outing for Onslow-Cole's Team Aon team-mate Tom Chilton, who finished sixth after running as high as third early on.

Triple Eight's James Nash scored his second top ten finish of the day in seventh place, whilst Tom Boardman notched up an impressive eighth position result after starting from the back of the grid following a race one retirement.

There was a photo finish for the final points position after Silverline Chevrolet's Alex MacDowall out-dragged David Pinkney's Vauxhall Vectra over the line. This turned out to be a particularly lucrative result as the finishing order of the top nine will be reversed for race three, which means MacDowall will start from pole position.

Woes continued for Sunshine.co.uk's Paul O'Neill, whose Honda Integra failed to start the race. His team-mate John George retired with two laps remaining, whilst Boulevard Team Racing's Martin Johnson and the AmD VW Golf of Shaun Hollamby also failed to finish.

The final race of the day will begin at 5.10pm.

Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship, Oulton Park, race two:
1. Jason Plato (Silverline Chevrolet Cruze), 15 laps
2. Matt Neal (Honda Racing Honda Civic), +0.749s
3. Tom Onslow-Cole (Team Aon Ford Focus), +3.483s
4. Mat Jackson (Airwaves BMW 320si), +4.921s
5. Steven Kane (Airwaves BMW 320si), +9.378s
6. Tom Chilton (Team Aon Ford Focus), +12.016s
7. James Nash (Triple Eight Vauxhall Vectra), +12.328s
8. Tom Boardman (Special Tuning UK SEAT Leon), +13.134s
9. Alex MacDowall (Silverline Chevrolet Cruze), +37.184s
10. David Pinkney (Pinkney Motorsport Vauxhall Vectra), +37.227s

Round six of the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship will take place at Snetterton on 7/8 August. Advance tickets are now on sale from £24 for adults, with free entry for children aged 12 and under. For more information call 0870 950 9000 or click on the link below.