Plato romps to first BMR win at Donington

Jason Plato secured his first victory as a Team BMR driver in the first BTCC race at Donington in imperious fashion, taking a lead he would never lose on the opening lap.

Starting from third on the grid, Plato made a fine getaway to move ahead of Gordon Shedden’s Honda on the drag down to hill to the Old Hairpin, before easing past poleman Colin Turkington approaching the final chicane.

Plato then duly began to pull away, as Turkington struggled to fend off Shedden carrying 33kg of ballast in his Volkswagen CC, the Ulsterman ceding second place at the Old Hairpin on the second lap.

An early fastest lap from Shedden suggested the Scot may have been able to challenge for the lead, but Plato, denied a near certain victory at Brands Hatch with a puncture, was able to manage the gap throughout, ultimately crossing the line to win by 1.4 seconds.

Turkington meanwhile was able to regroup, seeing off a challenge from Andrew Jordan’s MG and closing right on to the tail of Shedden’s Civic Type-R by mid-distance.

But Shedden was able to hang on to finish second despite a lock-up at Redgate and a moment a few laps later at McLeans, his fastest lap giving him pole position for race two.

Jordan brought home his MG fourth ahead of Sam Tordoff’s West Surrey Racing BMW and the impressive Dave Newsham in the Power Maxed Chevrolet.

Rising from a lowly 19th on the grid, Collard looked as if he would finish seventh after passing Jack Goff’s MG and Adam Morgan’s Mercedes in one move at McLeans, but Goff was able to keep in touch with the BMW driver and outdrag him to the finish to clinch seventh.

Behind Collard, Morgan, the best of the soft-tyre runners, was ninth ahead of Rob Austin’s Audi, Warren Scott’s BMR VW and Andy Priaulx, who made up 11 places after a mechanical problem in qualifying left him 23rd on the grid.

The other soft-tyre runners struggled for pace, with leading rookie Josh Cook dropping from his grid slot of sixth to 13th, and Matt Neal’s Honda plummeting 10 places to 17th, his problems compounded by carrying maximum success ballast.

Pos  Driver   Car   Time/Gap 
Jason Plato Volkswagen 18:54.080 
Gordon Shedden Honda 1.401
Colin Turkington Volkswagen 1.782
Andrew Jordan MG 5.961
Sam Tordoff BMW 14.328
Dave Newsham Chevrolet 15.177
Jack Goff MG 20.279
Rob Collard BMW 20.314
Adam Morgan Mercedes 21.774
10  Rob Austin Audi 22.269
11  Warren Scott Volkswagen 25.881
12  Andy Priaulx BMW 26.711
13  Josh Cook Chevrolet 29.701
14  Jeff Smith Honda 30.707
15  Martin Depper Honda 30.988
16  Tom Ingram Toyota 35.130
17  Matt Neal Honda 35.812
18  Aiden Moffat Mercedes 35.836
19  Hunter Abbott Audi 36.069
20  Alex Martin Ford 39.095
21  Kieran Gallagher Toyota 58.407
22  Derek Palmer Jr. Infiniti 1:03.124
23  Richard Hawken Infiniti 1 lap 
24  Stewart Lines Toyota 1 lap 
  Retirements    
Andy Wilmot Proton  
Simon Belcher Toyota  
Daniel Welch Proton  
Mike Bushell Ford

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About this article
Series BTCC
Event Donington Park
Track Donington Park
Drivers Andy Priaulx , Rob Austin , Jason Plato , Colin Turkington , Matt Neal , Warren Scott , Hunter Abbott , Derek Palmer , Gordon Shedden , Andrew Jordan , Martin Depper , Jeff Smith , Sam Tordoff , Dave Newsham , Rob Collard , Adam Morgan , Jack Goff , Aiden Moffat , Richard Hawken , Tom Ingram , Simon Belcher , Daniel Welch , Alex Martin , Andy Wilmot , Stewart Lines , Kieran Gallagher , Mike Bushell , Josh Cook
Teams Team BMR
Article type Race report