Rob Collard won the third British Touring Car Championship race of the day at Croft ahead of team-mate Andy Priaulx and the Honda of Gordon Shedden to give West Surrey Racing a clean sweep of race wins at the Yorkshire circuit.
Having forfeited the lead to Shedden on the third lap, Collard came back into the race as the former’s tyres fell away, and after giving the Honda driver a small nudge on lap 12, raced clear to claim a tenth career win.
Collard made a traditionally quick getaway at the start of the race, with minimal contact through the opening corners aside from some rubbing between Rob Austin and Tom Ingram.
But despite the quick start, Collard was not allowed to escape down the road and Shedden quickly returned to his tail. The 2012 champion had a look for the lead into Clervaux, but after lining up a move into Tower, he made the pass stick into Sunny In, with Collard quickly closing the door to stop team-mate Priaulx following him through.
In a race that threatened to get messy but stayed relatively clean, the gaps stabilised for some time before Collard began to reel the Honda in.
By lap ten, the pair were nose-to-tail throughout much of the lap and after getting a run onto the start/finish straight two laps later, Collard forced his way through after a slight tap to Shedden’s rear through the chicane, before escaping off into the distance.
With Shedden unable to catch up to the BMW, his attentions quickly turned to defending second from a charging Priaulx.
The Honda man looked to have done so, but after holding off Priaulx through much of the final lap, Shedden drove slightly too deep into the penultimate corner, with Priaulx rounding the hairpin onto the straight in second as Collard took the chequered flag.
Behind the podium finishers, Colin Turkington headed team-mate Plato home in fourth, ahead of race two winner Sam Tordoff who stole sixth from Matt Neal after a pass two laps from the finish.
Neal fell to ninth as he was re-passed by Tom Ingram and Jack Goff before the flag, while Warren Scott came through the field to claim a first top-ten finish of the season.
Points scoring result
|1||6||C||Rob COLLARD||Team JCT600 with GardX||BMW 125i M Sport||15||21:45.389||1:25.854||1|
|2||111||C||Andy PRIAULX||Team IHG Rewards Club||BMW 125i M Sport||15||7.249||1:25.717||3|
|3||52||M||Gordon SHEDDEN||Honda Yuasa Racing||Honda Civic Type R||15||7.973||1:25.809||2|
|4||1||Colin TURKINGTON||Team BMR||Volkswagen CC||15||10.585||1:26.047||4|
|5||99||Jason PLATO||Team BMR||Volkswagen CC||15||11.551||1:26.071||5|
|6||7||C||Sam TORDOFF||Team JCT600 with GardX||BMW 125i M Sport||15||11.732||1:25.917||6|
|7||80||Tom INGRAM||Speedworks Motorsport||Toyota Avensis||15||13.641||1:25.861||8|
|8||31||M||Jack GOFF||MG 888 Racing||MG 6GT||15||15.313||1:25.389||10|
|9||25||M||Matt NEAL||Honda Yuasa Racing||Honda Civic Type R||15||17.568||1:25.339||11|
|10||39||Warren SCOTT||Team BMR||Volkswagen CC||15||22.364||1:26.217||15|
|11||17||Dave NEWSHAM||Power Maxed Racing||Chevrolet Cruze||15||25.576||1:26.474||13|
|12||40||Árón SMITH||Team BMR||Volkswagen CC||15||31.251||1:26.823||16|
|13||16||Aiden MOFFAT||Laser Tools Racing||Mercedes Benz A-Class||15||38.411||1:26.651||18|
|14||55||Jeff SMITH||Eurotech Racing||Honda Civic||15||38.707||1:26.781||24|
|15||66||Josh COOK||Power Maxed Racing||Chevrolet Cruze||15||39.299||1:26.553||29|