Rob Collard took his first Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship win in two years with victory in the final race of the day at Knockhill.
The West Surrey Racing driver had previously won here twice in 2012, and the Fife circuit again rewarded success for Collard who charged through from sixth on the grid to win by a gap of over six seconds.
Pole-sitter Nick Foster held onto his pole position ahead of Fabrizio Giovanardi into turn one, Collard moving up two places to fourth place after a great start in the sister BMW 125i.
The 2003 Independent champion was soon third as he eased by Dave Newsham into the hairpin on the first lap, then robustly repeated the move on Giovanardi’s Motorbase Ford Focus a lap later.
The lead changed hands between the WSR drivers up front when Collard’s better exit from the final hairpin was enough to power by Foster and into the lead, one which he would never lose for a long-awaited first win of the season.
Newsham followed Collard by the Ford of Giovanardi at the hairpin, bringing Tom Ingram with him before Colin Turkington‘s lunge at Clark saw the Italian drift wide as Adam Morgan stole two places from the battling pair.
Turkington dispatched Morgan quickly moments later at the same Clark corner, while Newsham and Ingram soon found their way by the second BMW of Foster.
Giovanardi’s race ended in retirement after a wild moment following contact with the Honda Yuasa Racing Civic Tourer of Matt Neal, while a great weekend for Rob Austin was soon brought to an abrupt end as Jason Plato‘s Triple Eight MG cannoned into the rear quarter of the Audi at the final hairpin, which sustained terminal suspension damage.
Championship leader Turkington quickly slid inside Ingram at the hairpin on lap 13 for third, Foster following as the pair began the chase of Newsham’s AmD Tuning Ford Focus.
The pair of BMWs caught the Inverness driver with four laps to go, Newsham – a winner here in 2012 – grimly defending in a very clean dice between the trio. Turkington had his best chance exiting the hairpin, which he could not quite succeed in pulling off as Newsham claimed an emotional second place at Knockhill.
Foster settled for fourth despite pressuring his championship-leading team-mate, while fifth went to a fighting Andrew Jordan who recovered from 11th as he fought through the pack. Bringing fellow Honda driver Gordon Shedden with him, the Pirtek Racing man disposed of Ingram’s Toyota Avensis, then Morgan’s Mercedes A-Class as Shedden followed to sixth to limit the points damage.
Alain Menu finished eighth after staying clear of any serious trouble, while Ingram and Plato held onto the final two places within the top 10 in a triple top-10 weekend for BTCC rookie, Ingram.
Turkington therefore extended his championship lead as the series next heads to Rockingham on 6/7 September, although it remains the same 23 points over Shedden he entered Knockhill with.