Crash.Net BTCC News
Chilton wins finale as Neal crowned
16 October 2011
Matt Neal has become the 2011 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship title winner after an eighth place finish in the season finale at Silverstone.
Neal's third title was secured as he finished ahead of team-mate Gordon Shedden in a race won by Tom Chilton.
Neal went into the season finale six points clear of Shedden meaning the Scot had to finish ahead to stand any chance of the title. As it was, Neal ran ahead of his partner in crime throughout the race – even when the Audi of Rob Austin threatened to spoil the party as he fought the pair on track.
As it was, Neal crossed the line in eighth place with Shedden tenth after losing out to Frank Wrathall on the final lap.
Neal now joins Andy Rouse, Frank Gardner, Win Percy, Bill McGovern and Bernard Unett in a select group of drivers to have lifted at least three BTCC titles.
“I'm overwhelmed,” he said. “I never thought I'd win it once in my life and now it's three. It means the world to me.”
The race itself went to Chilton who led from start to finish to secure his second victory of the season, the Team Aon man jumping Alex MacDowall at the start to take he lead he would retain to the finish.
Jason Plato signed off as champion with his best result of the weekend as he took second while the podium was rounded off by Tom Boardman, who fought ahead of MacDowall to earn his place in the top three.
MacDowall has to settle for fourth place ahead of the Vectra of Andrew Jordan while Austin was sixth after a storming drive through the field in his Audi A4, showing one of his competitive races of the season to battle ahead of both of the title contenders; albeit with both drivers arguably not defending to the same level they could have done.
Tom Onslow-Cole took seventh ahead of the new champion, with Wrathall and Shedden rounding out the top ten.