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British Touring Car Championships

Monday 18th April 2011

HONDA RACING TEAM BTCC RACE REPORT - ROUNDS 4-6, DONINGTON PARK

Honda Racing Team ace Matt Neal zeroed in on the lead of the 2011 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship after taking his second win of the season at Donington Park on Sunday.

The Civic driver lined up his hatchback on pole position for the first of the weekend’s three races and built up a solid lead to bag victory number two of his campaign. He backed that up with a third place in the second race and seventh position in the final race of the weekend.

It meant Neal was one of the highest scoring drivers over the three races at the Leicestershire track and he is now just five points away from the championship summit.

The 44-year-old said he was pleased with his weekend’s work and he was also happy with the tweaks the Honda Racing Team had made to his two-litre turbocharged Civic.

“We were pushing hard all weekend and we‘ve got the results,” said Neal. “This championship is all about being consistent and grabbing the wins when you can and that is what we have done. I was roughed up a bit in the third race of the weekend but I’ve collected 32 points over the weekend, which is good. We’ve worked on the set-up of the car as well, and we’re starting to understand what makes it tick, so I’m leaving Donington Park with plenty of optimism.”

Neal’s team-mate Gordon Shedden had a bitter weekend when his car failed a technical check after he had finished in third position in the opening race of the weekend. The team reported that the car had somehow exceeded its 1.8-bar of boost pressure and Shedden was relegated to the back of the grid for the second race. He battled through to sixth place, but was ruled out of the third round when he was caught up in an opening lap skirmish. He is currently seventh in the standings.

“I just can’t buy any luck at the moment,” said Shedden. “I’ve been in the wrong place at the wrong time and had the worst of it, but I’m convinced we can start scoring big points from the next round onwards. We just need things to go our way.”

The next rounds of the 2011 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship are due to take place at Thruxton on April 30/May 1.

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