Fabrizio Giovanardi made it two wins from two at Snetterton to secure a dominant fourth win of the HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship season.
The defending champion started from pole position and was never headed as he added to his victory in race one earlier in the day, but behind the Italian, the fight for the remaining places on the podium was far more action packed.
Giovanardi led the field into Riches for the first time ahead of fellow front-row started Mat Jackson, but behind, the BMWs of Jonathan Adam and Colin Turkington were able to make up places; Adam off the line and Turkington at the Esses where he made a move on the Honda Integra of Paul O'Neill. Elsewhere on the opening lap, Andrew Jordan suffered a lurid slide at Riches while Stephen Jelley and Adam Jones were delayed by contact at the Esses.
It left Giovanardi our front from Jackson, Adam, Turkington and O'Neill, with Harry Vaulkhard, Matt Neal and Dave Pinkney rounding out the top eight. Neal however had jumped the start and was handed a drive-through penalty, while Pinkney lost no fewer than five places in one swoop at the start of the second lap.
Two of the cars to get ahead of Pinkney where James Thompson and Jason Plato, both of whom had started at the back following retirements in race one and were storming through the field. By the end of lap three, Thompson was already up to eighth, with Plato sitting just outside the top ten in eleventh.
Giovanardi was pulling away at the front and his lead was extended on lap five when Jackson's car began smoking at he came along the Revett Straight and was forced to pull off the circuit before returning slowly to the pits. That moved Adam to second with Turkington and O'Neill close behind, with Vaulkhard fifth and Thompson now up to sixth having found a way ahead of Rob Collard. Plato meanwhile was soon behind the Honda as he found a way past both James Nash and Collard in consecutive laps.
Out front, Turkington made a move on Adam for second into the Esses on lap eight and when Adam then ran wide on the exit of the corner, both Turkington and O'Neill got through on the inside at the Bombhole.
On lap nine, Thompson moved into fifth past Harry Vaulkhard and then took fourth from Adam with a nice move down the inside into Russell, and Plato followed him through to lie fifth – demoting Vaulkhard a place at Sear on lap eleven and also getting ahead of Adam before the end of the lap.
Both Thompson and Plato then closed onto the rear of O'Neill's Honda and when the sunshine.co.uk man was slow out of Sear on lap 13 and baulked Thompson, Plato saw his chance to take fourth place – then moving into a podium position when O'Neill ran wide at the same corner two laps later and lost momentum heading onto the Revett Straight. Thompson followed him through late into the lap, but by this point, the charging pair had simply run out of laps to do anything about the pair ahead.
Giovanardi duly took victory ahead of Turkington, with Plato holding off Thompson for the final step of the podium and O'Neill adding a fifth place to his earlier podium. Adam too sixth ahead of team-mate Collard while James Nash opened his BTCC account with eighth – getting ahead of Vaulkhard late on when he ran wide at the Esses, However, the Bamboo Engineering man will now start race three from pole after sportscar ace Allan McNish carried out the reverse grid draw.
Gordon Shedden took tenth and his first point with the Cartridge World Carbon Zero Racing team, with team-mate Jones eleventh, whole the delayed Jordan, Jelley and Neal were unable to fight for points.
Martin Johnson, John George and Dave Pinkney completed the classified finishers.
To view results, CLICK HERE.