A one-two result for MG KX Momentum Racing led by Jason Plato opened up a nail-biting conclusion to the championship fight at Brands Hatch in a dramatic second race that saw Andrew Jordan fail to score.
The unrelenting British weather continued to play havoc in a tense encounter as Plato again grabbed the initiative from pole position into the first corner, a place he would remain for the entirety of the 15-lap race.
The first corner saw the first of several dramatic incidents involving the championship-contending Honda drivers, as Gordon Shedden somehow recovered a huge spin at the bottom of Paddock Hill Bend following a slow getaway from the front row of the grid.
Although he recovered, the incident sent cars scattering, Sam Tordoff escaping in second place behind his team-mate as the battles behind became the undoing of championship leader Jordan.
The Eurotech Honda driver found himself embroiled in a scrap for fifth place, which ended in tears as contact between Aron Smith and Rob Collard at Surtees sent the latter into a spin, Jordan taking avoiding action but making contact with the Yuasa Racing Civic of Matt Neal.
The side impact terminally damaged the left-rear suspension of Jordan’s Honda and he spun into retirement at Hawthorns, reducing his championship lead to just 15 points over Plato with one race remaining – the MG man having entered the Kent circuit 49 points adrift.
Plato and Tordoff made their escape as the two MG6s finished over five seconds clear of Mat Jackson, the Airwaves Ford Focus driver joining the pair on the podium after evading the trouble around him from ninth on the grid.
Dave Newsham picked up fourth place for Speedworks in his Toyota Avensis, Smith recovering to fifth place after demoting his Airwaves team-mate Tom Onslow-Cole who fell back to ninth by the chequered flag.
Among those to leapfrog Onslow-Cole were Jack Goff and Shedden, Goff taking a sensational sixth place in the Team HARD Vauxhall Insignia after fending off the reigning champion, who briefly made a move stick only to lose out after a slide through Graham Hill Bend.
Adam Morgan sealed eighth place by passing Onslow-Cole also, the top 10 rounded out by the Dynojet Toyota of Frank Wrathall.
Neal’s race also ended in dramatic style, eventually parking his Honda at the approach to Hawthorns as it set ablaze, the three-time champion now officially out of the title hunt.
The penultimate Jack Sears Trophy victory of the season went the way of class champion Lea Wood, the Central/Wood Racing Vauxhall Vectra 20s clear of the opening race victor Shaun Hollamby‘s AmDTuning.com Golf.
The reverse-grid race brings good news for Shedden, who will be drawn onto pole position for the final race of the season, the top seven cars reversed while Jordan will have to fight through from the rear of the field.
(Photo Credit: PSP Images)