Plato Beats Turkington In Silverstone Opener

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Jason Plato kept the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship ticking over with victory in Sunday’s opening race at Silverstone.

The double champion lost the lead to championship leader Colin Turkington at the start as the rear-wheel drive BMW 125i enjoyed a better launch from the front row of the grid, leading the train of cars around the first two tours of the 22-lapper.

Plato quickly addressed the situation within three laps however, taking the lead with a well-judged lunge inside the BMW man at Brooklands on the third lap.

The lead would remain Plato’s for the rest of the race, holding off Turkington who stayed in close contact until the final lap of the race, Plato claiming a fourth victory of 2014.

Turkington limited the damage in the championship fight however by fending off a charging Mat Jackson for third place, the Airwaves Racing Ford Focus man rounding out the podium.

Jackson had jumped the second Triple Eight MG of Sam Tordoff at the start, while Alain Menu had also climbed to fifth place when the lights went out, the BMR Racing Volkswagen CC crossing the line in that position ahead of team-mate Aron Smith.

Smith endured a dice with Adam Morgan during the latter half of the race, the Ciceley Racing Mercedes A-Class soon forced to pull over with a problem that removed him from an impressive sixth.

Rob Collard inherited seventh place as a result, the top 10 rounded out by Marc Hynes, Rob Austin and Andrew Jordan, the latter having started down in 16th on the grid.

Honda Yuasa Racing drivers Gordon Shedden and Matt Neal both found themselves in dogfights further down the field than they would have wanted, Shedden ending the race in 14th following a tap from Tom Ingram, who later retired at Copse corner.

Neal finished down in 21st meanwhile, behind Luke Hines who claimed 20th place on his return race.

Race two gets underway at 14:32and you can follow all the action with The Checkered Flag and on Twitter via @tcfBTCC.

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