Renault UK Clio Cup

Newsham Takes Home Win To Put One Hand On Championship Trophy

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Team Pyro ace Dave Newsham stormed to victory in Round 15 of the ELF Renault Clio Cup with Michelin at Knockhill to continue his dominance of the 2010 campaign. With the series marking its return to the Scottish circuit after a four year absence, it was local hero Newsham who took the win, recording his eleventh win of the season. He now goes into the weekends final race needing just a fourth place finish or higher to win the 2010 title on his home circuit.

It was Newsham who took the Michelin pole position in qualifying, his thirteenth of the season, with JHR Development's Lee Pattison lining up alongside him. Ed Pead lined up third on the grid for Westbourne Motorsport, the three times Clio Cup vice champion returning to the series to fill in for father-to-be Patrick Collins. Total Control Racing pair James Dixon and Sam Tordoff were next up, with Jake Packun completing row three.

Newsham led away as the lights went out, with Pattison slotting into second ahead of a quick starting Packun, who leaped up to third from sixth, dropping Pead to fourth. Pead quickly regained his place on lap two and got right on the bootlid of Pattison for second, after the latter slid wide onto the gravel.

This was allowing Newsham to pull away at the front, with the order behind staying the same for a few laps. It changed on lap five, when Packun and Tordoff ran side by side for fourth. Packun was forced wide at Clark's, with the whole field bunching up as they headed towards the Hairpin. As they hit the corner, Tordoff suffered a blown tyre and with the pack so close, contact seemed inevitable, with Steven Hunter and Mike Robinson getting caught up, ending all three of there races prematurely.

As the pack settled down, it was Newsham out front, his gap increased again after another small mistake by Pattison in second, who had Pead hot on his heels. As the laps counted down, Pead continued to pressure Pattison, but was unable to find a way through. Behind, another battle was emerging for fourth, with Dixon and James Colburn nose to tail lap after lap, with Dixon defending well to hold onto the spot.

With the Clio's finding it tricky to find overtaking spots, the order remained the same until the end of the race, with Newsham crossing the line with a winning margin of nearly 4 seconds. Pattison finished second for his fifth podium of the year, with Pead picking up his first of the season in third. Dixon finished fourth, picking up the NGk Fastest Lap on route and also winning the Masters Cup honours. Colburn finished fifth, with Packun and Darren Wilson, a career best seventh, completing the results, the three earlier retirements depleting the already small Clio grid.

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Simon provides coverage of the support championships for the BTCC, having been a fixture in the TOCA paddock for over six years.
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