Giovanardi celebrates closing the championship lead
Vauxhall's Fabrizio Giovanardi snatched glory from the brink of disaster in the third Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship race at Brands Hatch this afternoon.
The Italian VX Racing driver made a tremendous start from fifth on the grid to run in second place, behind Mike Jordan, by the first corner. Facing fierce pressure from Colin Turkington in third, Giovanardi made his bid for the lead on lap 12, but the move sent the Vauxhall Vectra into a pendulum skid coming out of Paddock Hill Bend.
The multiple champion drew on all his expertise to pull off an incredible save, losing just two places in the process. He ran in fourth to the end, reducing Jason Plato's championship lead to just four points with six races to go.
Team-mate Tom Chilton had to start the race from near the back of the grid after a racing incident with Plato earlier in the day prevented him from finishing. The 22-year-old drove a determined race to cross the finish line in ninth place.
Fabrizio Giovanardi #5
"I had a good weekend with two wins and a fourth place. I'm now only four points behind Plato and it will be a very tight fight at the next two meetings."
Tom Chilton #7
"I lost my power-steering early on in the race and it was a real struggle to get the car around the track. I had to use both my arms to get the Vectra through Druids."
BTCC Provisional Round 24 Race Result
1. Colin Turkington (BMW 320si)
2. Gordon Shedden (Honda Civic)
3. Mat Jackson (BMW 320si)
4. Fabrizio Giovanardi (Vauxhall Vectra)
5. Jason Plato (SEAT Leon)
6. Tom Onslow-Cole (BMW 320si)
7. Gavin Smith (SEAT Leon)
8. Mike Jordan (Honda Integra)
9. Tom Chilton (Vauxhall Vectra)
-credit: vx racing