Belfast Telegraph

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Turkington on track for title after Knockhill race dramas

 

By Sammy Hamill

Colin Turkington has taken a giant stride towards a third British Touring Car Championship.

Three podium finishes at the Scottish Knockhill circuit yesterday sees him head into the final six races of the season with a 43 point lead.

But while Turkington drove superbly on a day of atrocious conditions it was in the stewards' room where he was the biggest winner.

Having qualified his West Surrey Racing BMW fourth fastest despite carrying maximum 'success' ballast, he climbed to second behind the Subaru of reigning champion Ash Sutton, then dropped to third before regaining second again in a move which saw him nudge the back of Stephen Jelly's BMW.

He had an anxious wait before officials decided it was a racing incident and confirmed his second place.

But it was race two which turned the championship on its hedge. Sutton won again with Turkington's closest rival Tom Ingram in second and the Portadown driver down in fifth.

However, Sutton's Subaru failed a ride-height check at post-race scrutineering and he was disqualified. Ingram was promoted to first - only to suffer the same fate as Sutton when his Toyota was deemed to be too low.

Victory was handed to Turkington's team-mate BMW team-mate Andrew Jordan with Colin moved up to third behind Josh Cook's MG.

With Sutton and Ingram relegated to the back of the grid for race three, Turkington took advantage to strengthen his grip on the championship lead with a strong second place behind the winning Ford of Tom Chilton.

He now leads Ingram by 43 points and is 51 ahead of Sutton going into the final six races at Silverstone and Brands Hatch.

There was no repeat of his Rockingham success for Chris Smiley who, despite qualifying his Norlin Honda fifth, struggled in the rain, finishing fifth, 11th and 11th.

Belfast Telegraph

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