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Alain Menu left seething after Jason Plato clash

Alain Menu was a frustrated man after a clash with MG’s Jason Plato eliminated him from the second British Touring Car Championship race at Croft.

The pair were battling over sixth place with Plato struggling for a second successive race, but while Matt Neal and Andrew Jordan before him muscled their way past, Menu played the waiting game as he looked for an opportunity to pass his fellow two-time champion.

That opportunity came on the penultimate lap of 15, as the Swiss got a run on his rival down the straight. But with Menu in sixth heading into Clervaux, the pair turned in at the same time and Plato clipped the rear of the Volkswagen Passat, sending the former into the gravel and ending his race.

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And after the race Menu was visibly upset about the clash, which he felt robbed him of more than just the race two result.

“Everything was going so well,” said Menu to TouringCars.Net. “We were making progress – we changed the car again after race one and it was pretty good. We weren’t going to change it for race three, as I think we had [it] as good as we could have.

“With Plato I was racing him so fair – I couldn’t have been any more fair – and I was just waiting for the right opportunity, not to do anything stupid and I did it. I was through – it’s not that I was alongside, I was through – why on earth did he turn [in]?”

The BMR Restart racer was also adamant about what the stewards should decide about the incident, while questioning the series’ appeal system, which would allow Plato to start from his current determined grid slot – fifth – should he appeal any decision that may go against him.

“We should have got sixth in that race and started fifth for race three, that’s the problem with this thing.

“They have to kick him out,” insisted the Swiss. “If they don’t kick him out I don’t understand this championship.”

“I hear that they can appeal…but surely if they did that and get the appeal in two months’ time, would they only lose race two? Or also race three? By appealing he starts race three, he gets points in race three which is not fair.”

And Menu, still incensed after his race two exit, was uncertain about what he could achieve from the rear of the field.

“…I have no idea…we can get a point or two but at the end of the day we are not fighting for the championship so it doesn’t matter.

“Right now I’m not that interested.”

UPDATE: Jason Plato has since been handed a ten-place grid penalty for the final race of the day, but keeps his sixth place finish from the second race.

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