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Mat Jackson thrilled with Thruxton spoils

Mat Jackson was elated with his performance at Thruxton, which saw him claim three top-five finishes which included a first podium of the 2014 British Touring Car Championship season.

After a stellar qualifying run saw the Airwaves driver qualify best of the rest behind the three leading Hondas, Jackson dragged his Ford Focus around the two Honda Yuasa Racing cars of Gordon Shedden and Matt Neal in race one, before they eventually bumped him back to fifth.

A fast start from Rob Collard in race two meant that he finished a place further back than he had started, but the third race of the day drew the best from Jackson as he kept his car out of trouble, before passing Jack Goff under green flags just as a safety car was called to move into third. With Fabrizio Giovanardi in second, it was a battle between the Motorbase drivers for top honours with Jackson eventually coming out on top, finishing three seconds down on race winner Colin Turkington.

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After the event, Jackson was pleased that he and his team were able to put in a competitive showing against the leading cars, and was optimistic that the season could yet yield a championship charge.

“Qualifying started really well for us and we’ve had three cracking results in the races and obviously finishing second in the last race was a highlight and fantastic way to end the day,” said Jackson. “Off the back of Donington the car proved it had very good pace where we were running with the Hondas again so we hoped would be in that position.

“We’ve never really been able to carry that over to another circuit but the car has proven that it can compete and we’re starting to get a handle on the car now where we can mount a serious challenge on the championship.”

But the 32-year-old admitted that while the Thruxton showing gave his team reason for celebration, they have more work to do in order to remain at the front of the field.

“Thruxton’s one of those circuits where you’ve got to be confident with the car and the Motorbase guys have given me a car that I feel confident with,” said Jackson, who now sits eighth in the standings. “We’ve made some gains on the car that we’re very happy with and this weekend’s an awesome result for Airwaves Racing.

“There’s more in the car that we need to find, the Hondas are clearly the benchmark at the moment and that’s where we need to be, we’re here to win and that is our main focus that will enable us to keep fighting at the front.”

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