Friday 29 June 2012

The MG KX Momentum Racing team secured their second race victory of the 2012 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) season at the Croft circuit in North Yorkshire. Jason Plato recovered from a first race technical issue, to win the third race of the day - the 70th victory of the Englishman’s BTCC career.

For the second race meeting running, Jason failed to make it to his grid slot for the start of Race One, as the technical issues that blighted his qualifying session yesterday returned. The MG KX Momentum Racing Crew worked away at the problem and got Jason back out on track to record some running and check the issue was resolved. Andy Neate had a strong opening lap and moved forwards from his 9th place start, bringing his MG6 home in 6th to equal his best finish of 2012 to-date.

Jason set out in Race Two to repeat his heroics from Oulton Park two weeks ago, where he came from the back of the grid to secure a podium finish. Despite a determined drive he couldn’t quite match that, however he did come through to seventh to score solid points and put himself in the mix for the reverse grid draw. Andy had a solid run to score his second successive points finish of the day, coming home in 9th position.

The Triple Eight run, MG squad’s luck seemed to turn for Race Three of the day. The reverse grid draw was kind to the team, placing Andy on the front-row in 2nd position, with Jason directly behind in 4th. Both MG’s made good getaways to battle the fast starting rear-wheel drive BMW’s into Turn One. Andy then fought his way past Foster for the lead, with a brave move into Lodge corner. Jason was soon behind him, as the two MG6’s ran first and second. Jason then moved into the lead as Andy lost some pace in his car after some contact with one of the Honda Racing cars when battling for position, he fell backwards to finish 9th. Jason held on to win brilliantly, completing his back to front day and keep the pressure on his championship rivals.

Jason Plato (#99), BTCC Standings: 3rd – 192 points: “A great end to what had been something of a tough weekend. Getting the win means the team can head into the summer break with optimism for the second half of the season. We made some changes to the set-up in that last race, which took the car in the right direction and with some testing and some development parts, we’ll be ready to fight when we get to Snetterton in August”

Andy Neate (#44), BTCC Standings: 17th – 46 points: “It’s good to come away from Croft with three top ten finishes. It’s disappointing to have led the majority of Race Three and not won it, especially as I think I had the pace to do so. The Safety Car bunched everyone up and I lost some temperature and pressure in my tyres, which means I couldn’t hang on, but it’s pleasing to have at least been fighting right at the front!”

Ian Harrison, Team Principal, BTCC Standings: Teams - 4th – 235 points, Manufacturers – 2nd - 360 points: “It’s been a difficult weekend, with the technical problems that carried across from yesterday to this morning on Jason’s car. But he had a brilliant drive in Race Three, which is what I expect from him, he’s the stand out driver in this series. Andy had a solid weekend and it should have been even better, having lead the majority of the race, it’s just unfortunate that it fell away at the end, but at least he’s proved he can fight outright for wins”

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