Top 10 BTCC Drivers of the Year 2012:
Team ES Racing
Vauxhall Vectra (S2000)
Championship points – Overall/Independents:
Championship position – Overall/Independents:
There were more than a few raised eyebrows when 2012 Clio Cup champion Dave Newsham revealed that he was to join ES Racing for his second year in the BTCC – especially as the team that had been the backmarker the previous season hadn't confirmed what cars it would be racing at the time.
When it acquired the ex-Triple Eight Vauxhall Vectras, Newsham's thinking became clear and he would soon show that the package was one that could surprise as he topped the times on Media Day and then stormed to pole at Brands Hatch for the opening round.
A clash with Jason Plato cost him the chance to go for victory, but a podium in race three was then followed by another podium at Thruxton.
A run of poor results dropped him away from the Independents title chase before the summer break but when racing resumed, Newsham picked up a fine win in the reverse grid race at Snetterton and then repeated the result on 'home' soil at Knockhill.
Two more podiums followed at Silverstone to cap an impressive second season when he made the most of the car underneath him to pick up some top results when the opportunity arose.
Having already inked a deal that will see him running in an NGTC car next year, Newsham will be eager to fight at the front on a consistent basis in 2013 and challenge for some silverware.
Crash.net's BTCC Driver of the Year:
3. Jason Plato
4. Mat Jackson
5. Andrew Jordan
6. Frank Wrathall
7. Matt Neal
8. Rob Collard
9. Aron Smith
10. Tom Onslow-Cole