Mat Jackson celebrating victory in the rain - Photo: PSP Images

Mat Jackson celebrating victory in the rain - Photo: PSP Images

Redstone Racing leads the Independent Teams' and Drivers' Championship after celebrating its second win of the 2012 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship season at Thruxton.

Torrential rain battered the Hampshire circuit, but it didn't stop the Kent team producing strong results. Redstone Racing's three drivers; Mat Jackson, Aron Smith and Liam Griffin produced top ten qualifying times in Saturday afternoon's session.

Jackson made a blinding start from fourth place on the grid to lead on the opening lap of the first race. He managed to build a comfortable lead while the rest of the field struggled with poor visibility as the rain fell. Teammate Griffin was running in twelfth place but his wheels touched the soaked grass and crashed heavily, bringing out the Safety Car. The recovery of Griffin's Ford Focus saw the race red-flagged, awarding Jackson with his second victory of the season and Smith ending his strong run in seventh.

Jackson said: “After the ups and downs of Donington Park it was fantastic to win at Thruxton, especially as we didn't think it was on the cards this weekend with the circuit being more likely to suit the NGTC cars. It's a great way to go into the break before Oulton Park.”

Jackson made another visit to the podium in race two. Starting from pole under safety car conditions due to the torrential rain, the Warwickshire racer led through the early stages only to drop behind the NGTC cars of Gordon Shedden and Jason Plato, before finishing third. Smith finished in the top ten once again in eighth position. Griffin finished in 17th, after the team worked hard to repair his heavily damaged Focus.

Griffin was full of praise of the Redstone team: “I really must pay credit to the boys in the team who worked so hard to repair my car after race one, they did a fantastic job as always. I'm glad I could pay them back with a points finish in the final race.”

Team Manager Oly Collins added: “The guys repairing Liam's car were unbelievable; I honestly didn't expect it to go out for race two and it ran faultlessly.”

The weather conditions caught teams out in the final race with many drivers opting for slick fronts. Smith was one of those drivers, as the rain started to fall again, he pitted for full wets settling for 15th place.

Smith commented: “I've never driven in such bad conditions, it was like trying to surf while blindfolded in race one! However, I was pleased to pick up some solid results. It was a shame about race three but the main thing was that we had three finishes in difficult weather.”

Jackson and Griffin helped secure further valuable points for the Redstone Racing team. Jackson finished in a comfortable sixth place and Griffin progressed up the field to cross the line in 12th.

Redstone Racing now top the Independent Teams' Trophy and second in the Overall Teams' Championship while Mat Jackson leads the Independent title battle.

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