Top 10 BTCC Drivers of the Year 2011:
Honda Civic (S2000/NGTC)
Matt Neal joined a select number of drivers to win the BTCC title on three occasions during the 2011 season, although it was a far from straight-forward success with no fewer than four other men having held a chance of beating him on Finals Day at Silverstone.
The season didn't start well for the Honda driver when he was punted out of race one at Brands Hatch, although bouncing back to win race three – the first of seven victories in 2011 – ensured his title challenge was soon back on track.
Strong performances in qualifying played a big part in Neal's success during the season, while five wins in the first half of the year meant he was firmly in contention when the title fight got down to the business part of the campaign.
Seeing off team-mate Shedden in the final race made him a three time champion and ensured he will be the man to beat again in 2012, when Honda switch to a ne NGTC version of the Civic that proved to be the class of the 2011 field.
Of course, it wasn't all plain sailing for Neal, with his collision with team-mate Gordon Shedden at Oulton Park – which cost Honda a sure-fire 1-2 finish – being the undoubted low of the season. The pitlane altercation with Jason Plato at Rockingham also wouldn't feature highly on his memorable moments from 2011, but at the end of the day, the points table doesn't lie – and when the chequered flag dropped for the 30th and final time in 2011, it was with Neal on the top.
BTCC Driver of the Year Top 10:
4. James Nash
5. Mat Jackson
6. Jason Plato
7. Andrew Jordan
8. Paul O'Neill
9. Rob Austin
10. Tom Onslow-Cole