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Quartet prepare for epic Touring Car battle at Brands Hatch
4:00pm Wednesday 10th October 2012 in Sport
FOUR drivers will head to Brands Hatch later this month in with a shot of the British Touring Car championship title after a dramatic penultimate round at Silverstone.
Gordon Shedden, Jason Plato and Andrew Jordan will face reigning champion Matt Neal on the Grand Prix circuit on October 20 and 21 in a three-race shoot-out for glory.
The title race took a dramatic twist at Silverstone when MG’s Plato scored two victories on a day when Neal failed to score a single point and title leader Shedden was unable to make the podium.
Despite a heartbreaking retirement in race one, Pirtek’s Jordan retains an outside chance of the championship with 67 points on offer at Brands Hatch.
An ecstatic Plato, who is just 15 points behind Shedden in the standings, said: “Despite the retirement in race two this is still one of the best days in my BTCC career.
“We’ve made more progress with our MG6 – in fact it’s a rocketship – and our tails are well and truly in the air.
“For MG to go into the final round with a chance of lifting the title in its first year back in the championship is fantastic and I really believe we’ve got the Honda boys worried.”
However, Shedden is not fazed by Plato’s bullishness.
He said: “We knew this was going to be our bogey circuit so today was about picking up what crumbs we could.
“I don’t think we could have wrung any more out of the car.
“I expect us to be fully back on song at Brands Hatch which has got lots of high-speed corners where our Civic comes into its own.
“I’d take points in the bag any day and I’m feeling good about our chances.”
Neal retired from the first two races – the second after a dramatic fire - and his disappointment was clear to see.
However he was quick to set this aside and focus on the challenge ahead.
Neal said: “Today has been a shocker but I’m not out of it yet.
“There are still a lot of points to be won at Brands and I’ll be going there with all guns blazing.
“Jason’s MG will be strong there and our main objective is to get a Honda over the line in first.
“Gordon is obviously better placed to do that so is the priority.”
Jordan’s reaction to his first race retirement was equally gut-wrenching but he will be going for a title double with the Independent’s championship lead to defend.
“My focus will be to stay ahead of my Independent rivals,” he said.
“Rob Collard has effectively halved the gap to 28 points but there are only 60 left at Brands and our car will be much stronger there.”
Tickets for the British Touring Car championship on October 20 and 21 are available from £25, with free entry for children aged 12 and under.
For more information, call 0843 453 9000 or visit brandshatch.co.uk
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