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News 2008: Classy Collard Claims Second

HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship - Round Eight
Knockhill, August 17, 2008

Rob Collard

Motorbase Performance BMW driver Rob Collard roared to second place in race three of the HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship at Knockhill.

Collard carried forward the momentum he built in finishing seventh and sixth in the earlier races of the day and produced a tremendous performance to climb onto the second step of the podium and also win the trophy for weekend's top Independent driver.

Starting from fourth on the grid Collard using the starting power of the BMW 320si to blast into second place at the first corner – and never looked back.  He tailed leader Darren Turner as they opened up a significant gap on the rest of the field, before the safety car was brought out on lap 10 after Turner's team-mate Jason Plato was involved in an incident that ended his race.

That allowed Andy Jordan in third to close the gap on Collard, but after the race resumed he was in no mood to surrender his place and fended off the younger with a tidy drive to the finish.

Collard's team-mate Steven Kane was meanwhile battling his way through the field after starting from 12th.  Unusually he dropped back slightly at the start, but came back strongly to pick his way through the pack and up into the points.  By lap eight he was into 10th, but a huge fight with Tom Chilton and Matt Jackson saw him come off worst and slip back to 14th.

The Ulsterman wasn't finished however, and as the race moved towards its climax he benefited from the battle raging in front of him to climb back into the top ten.  Just before the death he carved his way past Adam Jones to snatch ninth place and ensure an excellent double points finish for the Motorbase team.

An impressive points haul from Knockhill means Motorbase Performance BMW drivers Steven Kane and Rob Collard are now separated by only four points in the Independent Drivers standings and lie fourth and fifth respectively.

The results also mean Motorbase Performance BMW has closed the gap on Team Air Cool in third place in the Independent Teams table to just 13 points.

Motorbase Performance Team Principal David Bartrum said:
"That was absolutely brilliant, I'm delighted with our performance today – it must be down to my lucky kilt!  It has been a tough weekend in many ways as we had a difficult time in qualifying, but the team has once again done the hard work and turned it all round in the races.  It was great effort by everyone from the engineers to the drivers.  I'm obviously delighted for Rob to get the podium, he thoroughly deserved it as he drove so well all day.  Steven had a hard time in that last race but he did really well to come back and score points for us.  I've always liked coming up here to Knockhill and I'm really happy to be going home with some more trophies."

Motorbase Performance Team Driver Steven Kane said:
"It was another incredibly difficult race for me but in the end it was great to grab a couple of points and to see Rob get a podium for the team.  The car was excellent in the last race and the team did really well to turn it around from the previous race and give me a fighting chance.  If I had had that kind of performance from the start I think it would have been a different story.  Once we sort out our qualifying form I'm sure we will be challenging at the front in every race."

Motorbase Performance Team Driver Rob Collard said:
"I'm just very, very happy for the team.  They have worked so hard and supported me when things were not going well that I'm just delighted to have been able to get them a good result.  If the safety car had not come out I'm certain that I would have had the opportunity to get past Darren Turner and gone for the win.  All in all it's been a fantastic weekend and Knockhill has been good to me once again."

Motorbase Performance Race Three Results

Rob Collard        Position 2          12pts    Total Time – 25.31.050   Fastest Lap – 53.801

Steven Kane      Position 9          2pts      Total Time – 25.39.058   Fastest Lap – 53.775