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Tom Onslow-Cole wins eventful third race

Tom Onslow-Cole has finally tasted the victory champagne by winning the final race of the day at Silverstone. The Team Aon driver, second and third in the opening two races, finished ahead of pole-sitter Paul O’Neill and a resurgent Mat Jackson.

Click here for the full Round 21 Results.

Paul O’Neill had started from pole position after the top 6 of the previous race were reversed and initially led the first 9 laps of the race. However Onslow-Cole was able to use his power advantage on the ninth lap to draw alongside and pass into Copse corner, despite O’Neill immediately fighting back. However the Ford Focus’ speed advantage was still evident as Onslow-Cole had taken the position by the second corner.

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O’Neill drove a strong race thereafter to finish in second, having enough pace in his Honda Integra to come under no pressure from Jackson behind but not the outright pace to challenger Onslow-Cole in front. Jackson’s third position will come as a huge relief after a difficult weekend that has seen him lose a position overall in the championship.

Fourth was Matt Neal after a controversial race for the former double champion. Neal, who started second, didn’t get off to a great start and into turn one had Onslow-Cole and Jason Plato on either side of him. Three into one didn’t go and Neal tagged Plato, forcing him into a huge slide through Copse corner, with Neal having to save a slide himself. Both drivers lost time, whilst Onslow-Cole snuck through into second. Neal was then pushed wide into the second corner as a train of cars behind all ran out of room to brake and Neal became the unfortunate victim at the front.

Gordon Shedden was able to take his best result of the weekend with a fifth, and he also took the fastest lap of the manufacturer-entered cars. He had at one stage been ahead of team-mate Neal late in the race but lost out to his team-mate by the chequered flag.

Tom Chilton crossed the finish line in sixth, although earlier in the race it had been looking as if it could be another Team Aon 1-2. Then, on lap 19 after intense pressure from Jackson, Chilton was pushed wide and into a slide, losing him 3 places. With maximum success ballast on his car, and late-race tyre wear, he was unable to climb back to the front and had to settle for 6th.

Steven Kane finished in seventh despite several incidents during the race. During one move, on lap 12, Kane was involved in an incident with Andrew Jordan and Rob Collard that saw Jordan reitre from the race on the spot with damage and Collard drop down the order to eventually finish in 12th place.

James Nash held on to finish in eighth despite late pressure from the recovering Plato after his earlier spin. The second Chevrolet of Alex MacDowall was just behind to take the final points finish. MacDowall had an eventful race – at the start he stalled the car and was collected heavily by the BMW of Martin Depper. With substantial front end damage, Depper was out there and then, also forcing the safety car to make an appearance for four laps. MacDowall was able to continue, despite the heavy damage to the back end of his car, and was rewarded with a point.

David Pinkney finally managed to finish a race and took 11th position after having earlier retired from the opening two races.

There were drive-through penalties for Phil Glew, who finished in 13th, and Andy Neate who finished in fourteenth.

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