Darren Turner rebounded from his earlier disappointment at Knockhill to secure victory in the final race of the HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship weekend at the Scottish circuit.
Turner had qualified on pole position but was then forced to retire from the opening race after a coming together in race one and was denied a top six finish in race two after being forced wide on the penultimate lap at the hairpin following a strong run through the field.
The silver lining to that however was a place on the front row of the grid for race three, and when the lights went out, he made the best start to jump ahead of pole-sitter Andrew Jordan
and keep the fast starting BMW of Rob Collard
behind on the run into SEAT Curve for the first time. Behind, Collard slotted into second while Jordan managed to hold off Colin Turkington
through Leslie's and into Scotsman to hold third. Turkington held fourth ahead of Gordon Shedden
while Mat Jackson
completed the top six.
On lap two, Turkington was forced wide through Carlube and slipped back to eighth place which in turn promoted Jackson, Matt Neal
and Fabrizio Giovanardi
up the order, while Tom Onslow-Cole
battled ahead of Jason Plato
into ninth; the earlier double winner then sitting in tenth place.
Out front, Turner was maintaining a slender advantage over Collard while Jordan was battling to keep Shedden behind. The fight for fifth between Jackson and Neal saw the Vauxhall man dive past at the Hairpin on lap five. Turkington meanwhile was attempting to atone for his off-track excursion and took seventh from Giovanardi.
On lap seven, Turkington was up to sixth as he made a move on Jackson at Carlube, with the BMW Dealer Team man being forced wide over the gravel, which also allowed Giovanardi slip through into seventh place on the run down to the Hairpin as the mid-field battled for position. Plato meanwhile was all over the back on Onslow-Cole in the fight for ninth but was finding it hard to find a way past the Vectra.
Collard was closing onto the rear of Turner as the SEAT man tried to back the pack up to aid Plato in coming through the field, but the tactic came to nothing when the 2001 champion was forced to retire on lap eight. Finally seeing the chance to make a move on Onslow-Cole, he went down the inside into the Hairpin and slid through but as the pair exited the corner, the Vectra made contact with the left-rear of the SEAT and send Plato spearing off into the wall on the outside of the circuit – putting him out of the race and bringing out the Safety Car.
Turner led the train behind the Safety Car ahead of Collard and Jordan, with Shedden fourth, Neal fifth and Turkington sixth. Giovanardi was seventh ahead of Jackson, while Tom Chilton
and Steven Kane
had now made it into the top ten.
When the race resumed, Turner – now free of any requirements to try and aid Plato – broke away at the front as Collard came under pressure from Jordan behind while Shedden was forced to take increasingly defensive lines to stay ahead of former team-mate Neal.