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Honda buoyant after title success
5 October 2011
Matt Neal will arrive at Silverstone for the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship season finale as point's leader after the penultimate meeting of the year at Brands Hatch, with team-mate Gordon Shedden five points further back in a share of third.
The pair bounced back from punctures in race one to take a 1-2 finish in race three of the weekend at Brands Hatch to put themselves in a strong position for Finals Day.
With Honda Racing having already wrapped up the manufacturer's and team titles Neal now hopes to 'find the other piece of the jigsaw' by taking the drivers' championship.
“Winning these titles was our primary focus this season and we knew a good weekend at Brands Hatch would make it possible,” he said. “It is fantastic to achieve it. I had a puncture in the opening race and things weren't looking good but to top it off with a one-two is such a great feeling.
“There is still one piece of the jigsaw missing which is the drivers' title – and we'll go for that as well.”
Silverstone, as the finale should play into the hands of Neal and Shedden with their turbo charged Honda on what is deemed to be a 'power' circuit, providing them with a much needed edge to fight off reigning champion Plato in his normally aspirated Chevrolet.
“The drivers' championship is going to be a battle between the five guys still in with a chance but Matt and I know we have a race-winning car underneath us," said Scotsman Shedden. "Let's hope that we can add to the collection of silverware at Silverstone.|
Airwaves Racing driver Mat Jackson and 888 Racing's James Nash still have a chance of claiming the BTCC crown, thus making it the championship's first five way title decider in history.
Due to the unpredictable nature of the championship, it would be foolish to count any of them out.
by Simon Evans
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