BTCC Thruxton 1: Jordan loses out as Giovanardi wins

Fabrizio Giovanardi, Vauxhall, Thruxton, 2007Fabrizio Giovanardi’s championship campaigned gathered momentum with a win in the first round at Thruxton – though championship leader Jason Plato took second after a race-long battle.

Giovanardi made a fine start in his Vauxhall but he was instantly under pressure from Colin Turkington who made a phenomenal getaway in his rear-wheel drive BMW.

Turkington couldn’t hold on to second, though. Tom Chilton quickly passed him for second and then the Seats pounced on the BMW. Darren Turner was up third by the end of the first lap and Plato followed him through on the second lap.

Mike Jordan was the next man to pass Turkington at the start of lap three and a few laps later got Plato as well. The championship leader fell back into the clutches of Turkington again.

Things were going better for Plato’s team mate Turner who took the fight to Chilton and passed him at the fastest part of the circuit on lap ten. Jordan moved up to third on the next lap when Chilton ran wide at Campbell. Chilton continued to fall back and Plato was the next driver past.

Jordan looked set for an extraordinary finish when he overtook Turner for second place going past the pits on lap 13. But he suffered a heartbreaking puncture on the last lap, letting both Seats past.

On the run to the flag Plato took team mate Turner for second who had to fend off Turkington at the final corner.

Giovanardi won despite a late drama. He suffered engine trouble late in the race and pulled off after the chequered flag.

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