Turkington takes first Subaru BTCC win at Oulton Park

Colin Turkington took an historic first British Touring Car Championship race win for Subaru in the first race of the day at Oulton Park.

Having turned a wheel for the first time on the Friday before the opening round, the Team BMR-built and run Levorg estates had endured a baptism of fire over the first three meetings of the season. The team struggled for pace throughout the first two weekends, then withdrew entirely from the last round at Thruxton, over concerns that the fueling system could catch fire.

In the month between Thruxton and Oulton, the squad was finally able to unlock the pace it needed. Turkington took pole position and led from lights to flag to secure that first win for the Levorg.

Team JCT600 BMW man Sam Tordoff kept Turkington honest through the early stages of the race having beaten rookie Dan Lloyd into second place at the start, but couldn’t match the estate’s race-long pace.

Gordon Shedden soon nipped past Lloyd into third before coming under threat from Subaru-mounted Jason Plato. The pair battled for a number of laps, but the reigning champion was ultimately unable to resist Plato’s challenge. He drove off into the distance to make it two Levorgs on the podium.

Shedden would finish fourth, ahead of a tussle between Lloyd and Tom Ingram that was only settled on the run to the line, Ingram getting ahead by just 0.139secs.

For the first time this season, all 32 cars that started the race made the finish.

BTCC Oulton Park Race 1 top 10 finishers after 15 laps

  1. Colin Turkington — Silverline Subaru BMR Racing/Subaru Levorg GT — 21:56.702
  2. Sam Tordoff — Team JCT600 w. GardX/BMW 125i M Sport — +2.424
  3. Jason Plato — Silverline Subaru BMR Racing/Subaru Levorg GT — +9.954
  4. Gordon Shedden — Halfords Yuasa Racing/Honda Civic Type R — +13.429
  5. Tom Ingram — Speedworks Motorsport/Toyota Avensis — +16.249
  6. Dan Lloyd — Eurotech Racing/Honda Civic Type R — +16.388
  7. Josh Cook — MG Racing RCIB Insurance/MG6 GT — +19.119
  8. Aron Smith — Team BKR/Volkswagen CC — +19.312
  9. Matt Neal — Halfords Yuasa Racing/Honda Civic Type R — +20.395
  10. Andrew Jordan — Motorbase Performance/Ford Focus ST — +20.819

Race 2 got off to a chaotic start with three cars coming together at the Island Hairpin, which prompted a brief safety car period. Not that it bothered Sam Tordoff, who vaulted into the lead at the start and stayed there for the duration. In winning, he became the ninth different victor from the first 11 races and vaulted into the championship lead, having arrived in Cheshire only sixth in the standings. Such are the tiny margins in the BTCC.

Subaru team-mates Colin Turkington and Jason Plato tussled throughout the contest, but ultimately held station to secure a second double podium for BMR. Gordon Shedden was again fourth ahead of Tom Ingram.

Josh Cook and Matt Neal’s dispute over sixth would come to blows, but the damage was only cosmetic. MG man Cook took the position, but only after fending off the attentions of Rob Collard, who played a stunning cameo.

The veteran BMW pilot put on another his of overtaking masterclasses, rising from 23rd to meet the Cook/Neal battle. He managed to cut through, but contact with Cook broke the BMW’s suspension and put Collard out of the race.

BTCC Oulton Park Race 2 top 10 finishers after 16 laps

  1. Sam Tordoff — Team JCT600 w. GardX/BMW 125i M Sport — 24:15.404
  2. Colin Turkington — Silverline Subaru BMR Racing/Subaru Levorg GT — +1.638
  3. Jason Plato — Silverline Subaru BMR Racing/Subaru Levorg GT — +2.309
  4. Gordon Shedden — Halfords Yuasa Racing/Honda Civic Type R — +5.544
  5. Tom Ingram — Speedworks Motorsport/Toyota Avensis — +6.217
  6. Josh Cook — MG Racing RCIB Insurance/MG6 GT — +12.302
  7. Matt Neal — Halfords Yuasa Racing/Honda Civic Type R — +12.552
  8. Andrew Jordan — Motorbase Performance/Ford Focus ST — +13.207
  9. Jack Goff — Team IHG Rewards Club/BMW 125i M Sport — +13.848
  10. Mat Jackson — Motorbase Performance/Ford Focus ST — +13.989

Matt Neal was drawn on pole for Race 3 and capitalised fully, taking an easy win. Team-mate Gordon Shedden looked set to take second, but was denied by a puncture on the penultimate lap. That allowed Sam Tordoff, who pushed through from seventh on the grid, to secure the position and hold onto the championship lead by just a single point from Neal.

Jason Plato took advantage of a bruising squabble between Josh Cook and Tom Ingram to round out a hat trick of third place finishes. Ingram would eventually finish ahead of Cook, the pair having bumped and bored for much of the race.

Once again, Rob Collard scythed through the field from the back of the grid, finally with luck on his side to finish sixth. Only just, mind, as he had to drag race Colin Turkington’s Subaru to the line, getting the nod by 0.041secs.

Andrew Jordan was eighth ahead of Jake Hill, who had battled hard all weekend. Adam Morgan manhandled his Mercedes to tenth, after struggling with handling issues all weekend.

BTCC Oulton Park Race 3 top 10 finishers after 15 laps

  1. Matt Neal — Halfords Yuasa Racing/Honda Civic Type R — 22:18.716
  2. Sam Tordoff — Team JCT600 w. GardX/BMW 125i M Sport — +9.481
  3. Jason Plato — Silverline Subaru BMR Racing/Subaru Levorg GT — +11.662
  4. Tom Ingram — Speedworks Motorsport/Toyota Avensis — +11.760
  5. Josh Cook — MG Racing RCIB Insurance/MG6 GT — +11.827
  6. Rob Collard — Team JCT600 w. GardX/BMW 125i M Sport — +12.015
  7. Colin Turkington — Silverline Subaru BMR Racing/Subaru Levorg GT — +12.056
  8. Andrew Jordan — Motorbase Performance/Ford Focus ST — +12.299
  9. Jake Hill – RCIB Insurance Racing/Toyota Avensis — +12.494
  10. Adam Morgan — WIX Racing/Mercedes A-Class — +12.936

The next round of the British Touring Car Championship is at Croft in Yorkshire on 19 June.

For more information click here

By Only Motors

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