Toyota Gazoo Racing UK’s Tom Ingram soaked up race-long pressure from polesitter Dan Cammish to take victory in the opening British Touring Car Championship race at Thruxton, as standings leader Colin Turkington suffered a DNF due to a misfire.
Ingram’s Toyota Corolla got the superior start off the line and dragged past Cammish’s Honda Civic on the run to turn one to seize a lead he would never relinquish, despite the latter’s best efforts to fight back particularly in the closing stages.
As well as a tight battle for the win, race one in Hampshire could prove to be a turning point in the title fight, as Ash Sutton takes the championship lead by just one point as a result of his fifth position finish as erstwhile leader Turkington’s misfire left him with zero points.
Cammish’s team-mate Matt Neal held off Ciceley Motorsport’s Adam Morgan to secure the final position on the rostrum – his first podium of the 2020 campaign – to make it a Halfords Yuasa Racing 2-3 in the opening race.
There was then a nine second gap to the next car, a gap which had been occupied by MB Motorsport’s Jake Hill but for a costly spin which dropped him out of the points, seemingly with a front-left issue.
Ash Sutton eventually rounded out the top five positions having progressed from 11th on the grid, enjoying a strong opening lap before powering past Turkington’s struggling BMW on lap six.
The 2017 champion enjoyed a close battle with Rory Butcher, but would ultimately make the move on the exit of the complex and hold off the Scot’s Ford Focus ST to the flag.
Just over half a second Butcher’s Motorbase Performance machine was the first of the BTC Racing Honda Civics, with Tom Chilton placing in seventh just ahead of Turkington’s team-mate Tom Oliphant who was the sole Team BMW points-scorer in the race.
The Brands Hatch race three winner was ahead of the BTC Racing duo of Josh Cook and Michael Crees in ninth and tenth respectively – meaning all three of the squad’s Honda Civics placed in the top ten.
Senna Proctor’s Excelr8 Motorsport Hyundai i30 Fastback N was 11th ahead of series returnee Rob Austin who enjoyed a strong showing as the latest recruit the Power Maxed Racing Vauxhall Astra.
He managed to eclipse the second Hyundai of Chris Smiley on the final lap to finish 12th, while Ollie Jackson’s Ford and Aiden Moffat’s Infiniti rounded out the top 15.
The second race of the British Touring Car Championship at Thruxton is scheduled to get underway at 14:35 BST.
|1||80||M||Tom INGRAM||Toyota Gazoo Racing UK with Ginsters||Toyota Corolla||16||20:33.110||1:16.206||2|
|2||27||M||Dan CAMMISH||Halfords Yuasa Racing||Honda Civic Type-R||16||0.644||1:16.281||1|
|3||25||M||Matt NEAL||Halfords Yuasa Racing||Honda Civic Type-R||16||8.578||1:16.314||3|
|4||32||I||Adam MORGAN||Carlube Triple R Racing with Mac Tools||Mercedes-Benz A-Class||16||9.064||1:16.388||4|
|5||116||I||Ashley SUTTON||Laser Tools Racing||Infiniti Q50||16||18.578||1:16.864||11|
|6||6||I||Rory BUTCHER||Motorbase Performance||Ford Focus ST||16||19.776||1:16.939||6|
|7||3||I||Tom CHILTON||BTC Racing||Honda Civic Type-R||16||20.374||1:16.842||7|
|8||15||M||Tom OLIPHANT||Team BMW||BMW 330i M Sport||16||21.234||1:17.106||12|
|9||66||I||Josh COOK||BTC Racing||Honda Civic Type-R||16||21.487||1:17.269||10|
|10||777||I||Michael CREES||The Clever Baggers with BTC Racing||Honda Civic Type-R||16||21.888||1:17.236||9|
|11||18||I||Senna PROCTOR||Excelr8 Motorsport||Hyundai i30 Fastback N||16||24.456||1:17.221||13|
|12||10||I||Rob AUSTIN||Power Maxed Car Care Racing||Vauxhall Astra||16||27.261||1:17.560||16|
|13||22||I||Chris SMILEY||Excelr8 Motorsport||Hyundai i30 Fastback N||16||27.587||1:17.477||14|
|14||48||I||Ollie JACKSON||Motorbase Performance||Ford Focus ST||16||27.879||1:17.355||15|
|15||16||I||Aiden MOFFAT||Laser Tools Racing||Infiniti Q50||16||29.910||1:17.389||18|
|16||31||I||Jack GOFF||RCIB Insurance Racing with Fox Transport||Volkswagen CC||16||30.192||1:17.223||21|
|17||19||I||Bobby THOMPSON||GKR TradePriceCars.com||Audi S3||16||30.478||1:17.259||20|
|18||180||I||James GORNALL||GKR TradePriceCars.com||Audi S3||16||38.403||1:17.710||19|
|19||32||I||Jack BUTEL||Carlube Triple R Racing with Mac Tools||Mercedes-Benz A-Class||16||44.675||1:18.281||24|
|20||12||I||Stephen JELLEY||Team Parker Racing||BMW 125i M Sport||16||48.784||1:18.141||17|
|21||8||I||Tom ONSLOW-COLE||RCIB Insurance Racing with Fox Transport||Volkswagen CC||16||52.965||1:18.181||25|
|22||24||I||Jake HILL||MB Motorsport accelerated by Blue Square||Honda Civic Type-R||15||+ 1 LAP||1:16.658||5|
|23||4||I||Sam OSBORNE||MB Motorsport accelerated by Blue Square||Honda Civic Type-R||13||+ 2 LAPS||1:17.830||23|
|24||1||M||Colin TURKINGTON||Team BMW||BMW 330i M Sport||12||+ 3 LAPS||1:17.163||8|
|R||41||I||Carl BOARDLEY||Team HARD.||BMW 125i M Sport||10||DNF||1:18.813||26|
|R||44||I||Andy NEATE||Motorbase Performance||Ford Focus ST||10||DNF||1:18.641||22|
|R||28||I||Nicolas HAMILTON||ROKiT Racing with Team HARD.||Volkswagen CC||1||DNF||N/A||27|