BTCC: Plato the rainmaster in Silverstone second practice

BTCC: Plato the rainmaster in Silverstone second practice

SEAT Sport UK driver Jason Plato sensationally set the fastest lap in a frantic end to the second free practice session. West Surrey Racing's Anthony Reid looked like dominating with a strong early lap before the rain started to fall, but the ...

SEAT Sport UK driver Jason Plato sensationally set the fastest lap in a frantic end to the second free practice session. West Surrey Racing's Anthony Reid looked like dominating with a strong early lap before the rain started to fall, but the conditions cleared up towards the end and Plato emerged the fastest of a number of drivers who set their fastest time on the final lap.

Jason Plato.
Photo by Dave Dyer.

Reid again lead MG's charge with a 1:37.687s lap to go fastest right at the start of the session. Team Honda driver Chilton followed him around the circuit before running wide through the gravel at Luffield and returning to the pits. He lost a significant amount of time while his Honda Civic Type-R was cleaned out.

The early runners returned to the pits leaving Muller and Plato running on a relatively quiet circuit. VX Racing driver Yvan Muller moved up to second with a lap just three tenths of a second slower than Reid and Plato also improved to fourth behind Muller's team-mate Thompson before pitting and leaving an empty track.

Engines fired up again with fifteen minutes to go and the Computeach Racing with Halfords Honda Civic Type-R of Dan Eaves shot up to third place with a 1:38.048s lap, quickly pursued by Plato one-tenth of a second behind. The rain started to fall heavily however and cars slid all over the circuit, with Farique Hairuman's Proton Impian being nudged into a spin at the Abbey hairpin and damaging the front of his car.

Chilton was the only driver improving on his time after he spent the first half of the session in the pitlane. He gradually lowered his time over a long run and eventually moved up to seventh place, which became eighth by the end of the session. The rain eased in the closing minutes and Matt Neal took the opportunity go move up to second place with a 1:37.986s lap.

Muller moved up to second in the final minute just one tenth of a second behind Reid. Plato then pulled out a 1:37.142s lap to go fastest as the chequered flag came out to go fastest. Muller also went quicker than Reid on his final lap and took second place with 1:37.687s. Matt Neal's final lap was not as quick as Reid's best time and his Computeach Racing with Halfords Honda Civic Type-R moved up to fourth.

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