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Colin Turkington puts on a champion show after first race disaster

Colin Turkington went from zero to hero on a day when his fellow Ulster drivers Steven Kane, Charlie Eastwood and Daniel Harper were also racking up podium finishes from Brands Hatch to Misano in Italy.
 
And there was a superb third place for Josh Moffett in the opening round of the European Rally Championship in the Azores as well as victory for Derek McGarrity in the Circuit of Kerry.

But it was Turkington who stole the spotlight as the British Touring Car Championship roared back into life at Brands Hatch. The two-time champion from Portadown made the worst possible start to his return to the West Surrey BMW team when the first of his three races lasted only a few hundred yards.

Starting fifth on the grid, he dived for a space between the two Hondas of Gordon Sheddon and Matt Neal only for the gap to close and he and Neal collided, eliminating them both.

It meant starting from 32nd and last on the grid for race two but Turkington sliced his way through the field, passing car after car to climb into the top 10 by the end of the 24 laps. And in the last race of the day he charged from ninth place to second, finishing on the tail of his new BMW team-mate Andrew Jordan.

Race one was won by the Toyota of Tom Ingram with Sheddon, the champion, taking race two.

In the support races at the Kent circuit, Charlie Eastwood scored two second places behind reigning champion Dan Cammish in the Porsche Carrera Cup GB and 16-year-old Daniel Harper recovered from a disappointing eighth place in round one of the UK Ginetta Junior series to take third in round two.

Meanwhile, Kane was celebrating, too, by steering the Bentley team to second place in the first of this season's Blancpain European GT races at Misano, the Ballynahinch-born driver putting in a stunning final stint after taking over from his French partner Vincent Abril.

He was unable to catch Maxi Buht and Franck Perera's Mercedes but held off their team-mates Dominik Baumann and Jimmy Eriksson for second. The Bentley duo had been fourth in Saturday's qualifying race.

Andrew Watson helped European endurance champion Rob Bell climb from 18th to ninth in their Strakka McLaren.


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