Onslow-Cole wins race 3 Tom Onslow-Cole has won today's third Dunlop British Touring Car Championship race at Silverstone to close dramatically on Jason Plato in the title race. After a brief safety car period -- caused when the unsighted...
Onslow-Cole wins race 3
Tom Onslow-Cole has won today's third Dunlop British Touring Car Championship race at Silverstone to close dramatically on Jason Plato in the title race.
After a brief safety car period -- caused when the unsighted Martin Depper's BMW rammed Alex MacDowall's stalled Chevrolet at the start -- Onslow-Cole squeezed his Team Aon Ford Focus past Paul O'Neill's Sunshine.co.uk/Tech-Speed Honda along the pits straight to take the lead.
From there he pulled clear to win by nearly three seconds from O'Neill who was an ecstatic second. Onslow-Cole also set the race's fastest lap.
Finishing third was Airwaves BMW driver Mat Jackson after a robust move on Aon's other driver Tom Chilton at Brooklands. The resulting contact dropped Chilton down to sixth behind Honda Racing Team duo Matt Neal and Gordon Shedden.
Neal had been involved in a first corner clash with old rival Jason Plato, the championship leader. Both their cars span sideways but were able to continue. Plato, though, lost a huge amount of time and could only finish ninth in his Silverline Chevrolet Cruze. Neal later explained that a brush with Onslow-Cole had caused him to bash into Plato...
As a result, Plato's lead has been slashed to just 14 points by Onslow-Cole who has moved past Neal into a clear second in the standings as the BTCC now heads north of the border for its annual visit to Scotland and the spectacular Knockhill circuit in Fife on 5 September.
Meanwhile, tenth, despite his Chevrolet having suffered heavy rear-end damage in its startline shunt with Depper's BMW, was MacDowall. Depper was less fortunate, retiring immediately at the side of the track with massive front-end damage to his car, although he was able to extricate himself from the wreckage without injury.
The race's other big talking point was a three-car tangle at Becketts on lap 12. Steven Kane's Airwaves BMW and Andrew Jordan's Pirtek Vauxhall Vectra collided and the latter was sent into Robert Collard's WSR BMW. Kane continued to finish seventh, Collard span and would finish back in 12th while the wayward Jordan retired in a gravel trap.
Other retirements would include O'Neill's team-mate John George, Tom Boardman's Special Tuning UK SEAT and Lea Wood's Central Group Honda Integra after it sprang an oil leak on the way to the grid. George's retirement, due to an engine problem, was particularly galling as the Guernseyman had been on course for a top ten finish...