- Matt Neal on cusp of BTCC lead after historic ‘Diamond Double’ success
- More podium silverware inspires Dan Cammish in hunt for victory
- Confidence high for Rockingham as Halfords Yuasa Racing defend teams’ advantage
Matt Neal’s momentous victory in the first-of-its-kind 60-mile race at Snetterton – held in honour of the BTCC’s 60th anniversary celebrations – not only signalled his and the Team Dynamics-backed Honda squad’s second victory of the season, but the maximum double-weighted points reward has spurred it towards the summit of the key championship standings.
With four rounds remaining, Honda heads to Rockingham with Neal sitting third in the drivers’ table – 16 points shy of the top spot – while Honda is second and closing on BMW in the manufacturers’ reckoning. Better still, Halfords Yuasa Racing is now in charge of the fiercely-competitive teams’ championship and Dan Cammish is stretching clear in the Jack Sears Trophy thanks to a third podium of the season in Norfolk.
Next up for the in-form pairing is Rockingham, which makes use of its famed banked oval for a unique full throttle blast all the way from the final corner to the first, before the drivers delve into a tricky and technical infield section.
It is a circuit that suits a balanced all-round package, which Neal says should favour the Civic Type R (FK8) with its accomplished engine and aerodynamically-efficient silhouette. With the team on a roll, both Neal and Cammish head to Rockingham with sights set firmly on more strong points to consolidate its positive placings in the overall classification.
“It was a truly special feeling to make BTCC history at Snetterton and it’s a pleasure to reward the team for all of the hard work they have put in this year to make the new Civic Type R (FK8) such a competitive package. While we’re all certainly still buzzing and savouring the moment, we are nonetheless focused on the rounds ahead, beginning with Rockingham, a track I had the honour of claiming victory at on the BTCC’s inaugural visit back in 2003. It’ll be tough to replicate that feat considering the success ballast I’ll be carrying but we have tested there this year and the Honda has all the attributes needed to perform well at Rockingham. If we enjoy a clean weekend, we’ll be in good shape overall.”
“We’re definitely coming to Rockingham on a roll after such a big haul of points at Snetterton. It’s great to see the team riding high in all of the championships at the moment and we’re certainly seeing the benefit of everyone’s hard work this year. As for myself, I was very pleased to be back on the podium again and it just motivates me further to reach that elusive top step, which I feel is getting closer with every round. Rockingham suites the Civic Type R with its balanced chassis and strong engine, so I believe there is great opportunity to collect another set of positive results.”
1. Tom Ingram 189 points
2. Colin Turkington 183 points
3. Matt Neal 173 points
4. Jack Goff 172 points
5. Josh Cook 157 points
6. Andrew Jordan 157 points
11. Dan Cammish 112 points
1. BMW 509 points
2. Honda 480 points
3. Vauxhall 459 points
4. Subaru 333 points
1. Halfords Yuasa Racing 278 points
2. Power Maxed TAG Racing 264 points
3. Team BMW 263 points
4. WIX Racing with Eurotech 205 points
5. Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Gallagher 195 points
6. Speedworks Motorsport 182 points
Jack Sears Trophy Standings
1. Dan Cammish 264 points
2. Chris Smiley 208 points
3. Matt Simpson 198 points
4. Ollie Jackson 184 points
5. Rory Butcher 182 points
6. Tom Oliphant 165 points