Sutton wins to put himself on the brink of the title

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Sutton took his fifth win of the season to close in on his second BTCC title. Photo Credit: media

Ash Sutton won a chaotic second Kwik Fit British Touring Car race of the day at Brands Hatch to extend his championship lead over Colin Turkington to 11 points with one race remaining.

Defending champion Turkington kept his hopes of a record fifth title alive with a battling drive from ninth on the grid. He did finish third on the road but was demoted to fourth courtesy of a two second penalty for overtaking Dan Cammish under yellow flags.

The race was run in markedly different conditions to the first, as bright sunshine beat down on the Kent circuit which began to rapidly dry. This resulted in the bulk of the field starting the race on slick tyres.

As the lights went out, Cammish made a poor start from pole position and Sutton swept into the lead on the run down to Paddock Hill Bend. The field then ran three abreast and there was contact between a number of cars including Cammish, Tom Ingram, Ollie Jackson, Rory Butcher and Jake Hill.

This shuffled the order and allowed Turkington to cut through the order, though not without drama, as he made contact with Josh Cook at Druids which both drivers escaped unscathed.

With the slick shod cars circulating gingerly in the opening stages, Tom Chilton and Andy Neate who had gambled on wet tyres carved their way through the pack. Chilton passed Sutton for the lead before the opening lap was complete whilst Neate had worked his way up to fourth.

By lap three, Chilton had a three second lead over Sutton and Neate had made his way past Cammish into third as the track conditions continued to suit the drivers on wet tyres.

However, as the race wore on the track became drier and drier and Chilton’s pace began to fade. Sutton repassed the BTC Racing driver on lap 9 and bolted into the distance, creating an unassailable advantage.

Ingram recovered from the first corner shenanigans that dropped him to 12th, to finish a distant second. Whilst Dan Cammish was awarded third place after Turkington overtook him on the run to Druids which was under yellow flags due to Paul Rivett’s Audi being stranded in the middle of the track following a spin. Somehow, everyone managed to just avoid him.

Jackson finished fifth ahead of Adam Morgan in sixth and Hill in seventh.

Senna Proctor was eighth in the Hyundai, Josh Cook was ninth, with Butcher rounding out the top ten.

The draw for the reverse grid put Aiden Moffat on pole and Sutton in 12th.

The final race of the day is at 3:15 and will be broadcast live on ITV4.

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Freelance sports journalist with an immense passion for motorsport. I will be focusing on the BTCC this season and I look forward to bringing the latest news, analysis and features from the paddock.
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