Turner scores sensational 'last-to-first' ASCAR victory. Darren Turner scored a sensational ASCAR victory for his HTML team after starting from the back of the grid in the ASCAR 'Days of Thunder'-style series at Rockingham yesterday. Turner,...
Turner scores sensational 'last-to-first' ASCAR victory.
Darren Turner scored a sensational ASCAR victory for his HTML team after starting from the back of the grid in the ASCAR 'Days of Thunder'-style series at Rockingham yesterday.
Turner, who was starting his first ASCAR event of the season, flashed by the chequered flag 2.3 seconds ahead of reigning ASCAR champion John Mickel and former Touring Car star Kelvin Burt. Turner sealed a great day for HTML by also putting his Pontiac Grand Prix on pole position for Sunday's opening race, having dominated the midday qualifying session.
"The car was just great," said Turner. "It was a bit nervous at first but it was spot on as the tyres got up to temperature. I loved every minute of it. I can't wait for the next race - you can run it now if you like!"
Turner, who is F1 test driver for McLaren and a former star of the DTM series in Germany, started the event fifteenth on the grid out of the seventeen starters, but scythed through the field to take the lead on Lap 46 of the 60-lap event.
It was former Champ Car star Nicolas Minassian who led from the start ahead of championship leader Colin White, and stayed in front until the yellow flags came out on Lap 29 after German driver Roland Rehfeld smashed into the wall at 150mph out of Turn Two. The cars streamed into the pits for their mandatory pitstops at the same time and as the flag dropped for the restart on Lap 37 the complexion of the race changed, as Minassian began to drop back through the field with an ailing motor.
Stevie Hodgson took over the lead in a four-way scrap with Mickel, Turner and Burt before Oxford-based Turner stormed through to take over the lead and a famous victory.
Local driver Anthony Swan from Corby, crossed the line in fourth place, with reigning British Touring Car Champion Jason Plato and BAR F1 test driver Darren Manning filling the remaining top six positions.