MAT JACKSON celebrated a superb double podium and two Independent race wins during an action-packed weekend at the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship over the bank holiday weekend.
A strong start to the weekend saw Jackson finish Saturday morning’s free practice sessions in the front row with the 35-year-old initially claiming pole before the session was red-flagged.
Jackson eventually slotted into P2, narrowly missing out on the top spot by just 0.288 seconds.
An accustomed fast start off the line from Jackson in the first race saw the #7 Focus head into turn one side by side with race leader Shedden.
With a safety car deployment allowing the fast charging Subaru’s to catch the DUO-backed Focus, Jackson delivered yet another class act in defensive manoeuvres – holding off both works-backed cars for the remaining 15 laps to take P2 at the chequered flag – marking his 75th BTCC podium.
The second race started in similar fashion with the Motorbase pair charging into the race lead for a brief Motorbase 1-2 on the grid’s second tour of the oval circuit.
With 66kg of ballast hampering Jackson’s pace, he was unable to hold off Tordoff and Collard’s lighter BMWs as the race progressed and he did well to bring the #7 Focus home in P4.
The reversed grid draw slotted Jackson into fourth for the final race of the weekend. With both Focus STs running on the less-favoured hard compound tyre coupled with 48kg and 66kg of ballast, the pair had a tough fight to hold position. Jackson fared better and a gallant performance from the DUO-man was rewarded with a P5 finish.
“To come away with a podium and two top five results is great for our Championship position heading into the second to last round at Silverstone,” said Jackson.
“Race 1 was yet another defensive drive with the Subaru’s for company for the whole race but we managed to keep them at bay, playing to our strengths through the corners and defending in the high speed straights.
“We struggled a bit more on overall pace with the extra weight on-board in race 2. We managed to get a great start to take the lead but ultimately the weight took its toll and moved us back down to 4th which although disappointing, it did mean that we were lighter for the last race.
“Race 3 was tough with the hard tyre, but we got a good break early on and if it wasn’t for the safety car then I think we would have been on for another podium.”