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BTCC Thruxton Round 2 report

Stephen Dobie
27 Apr 2009

Three different winners over three races as BTCC Round 2 action hits Thruxton

This year’s BTCC season is shaping up to be as unpredictable as Formula 1, if not more so. Out of the six races so far, there are six different winners, resulting in a fairly tight Driver Standings table.

Round 2’s three races took place at Thruxton on April 26, and it was Vauxhall’s VX Racing team with most reason to cheer. Five podium placings, the championship’s leading driver and a healthy lead in the team standings show what we’ll miss next year, after the team’s announcement it’ll quit BTCC after this season draws to a close.

Its drivers aren’t likely to be struggling for seats once their team disappears, though – in race one at Thruxton, reigning champion Fabrizio Giovanardi took the chequered flag while leading home a VX Racing 1-2-3, Matt Neal and Andrew Jordan following in second and third.

Race 2 was won by Team RAC driver Colin Turkington, but the podium featured almost as much red, white and black as the previous race with Giovanardi and Neal in second and third. Turkington’s win surprised some, with the man himself even admitting his rear-driven BMW 320si isn’t suited to Thruxton.

In the final race, with the grid reversed, Mat Jackson took the win in his Chevrolet Lacetti. Much like RML teammate Jason Plato’s win at Brands Hatch, it came just days after he’d joined up, having missed the opening round of the championship. Adam Jones (driving a SEAT Leon) and James Thompson (Honda Civic) followed in second and third.

VX Racing’s Matt Neal leads the driver standings on 64 points, his haul of podium points from Thruxton ensuring he’s clung on despite not getting a win at the Hampshire circuit. The leading drivers are all closely knit still, though, leaving the championship wide open.

Driver standings after Thruxton (Round 2)
1    Matt Neal (VX Racing/Vectra)    64 points
2    Colin Turkington (Team RAC/320si)    58
3    Fabrizio Giovanardi (VX/Vectra)    47
4    Robert Collard     (Airwaves/320si)    41
5    Jason Plato (RML/Lacetti)        36

Team standings after Thruxton (Round 2)
1    VX Racing (Vauxhall Vectra)    109 points
2    Team RAC (BMW 320si)        87
3    Airwaves BMW (BMW 320si)    52
4    Cartridge World (SEAT Leon)    45
5    RML (Chevrolet Lacetti)        42

Win tickets to round 4 at Oulton Park.

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