The Halfords Yuasa Racing team had high hopes for qualifying after their two cars topped the times in final practice, and Dan Cammish delivered in style. Ignoring spots of rain, he took his Honda Civic Type R to a second successive pole position and by the largest margin of the season, his 103mph lap smashing the Silverstone qualifying record. Matt Neal's recent form continued too as he secured sixth grid spot, less than three tenths behind his team-mate.
In Race One Cammish held P1 off the line – something he struggled to do at Thruxton – but he couldn’t hang on for long as he and Toyota star (and fellow “Cobra driver”) Tom Ingram swapped places twice on the opening lap.
Cammish critically regained the lead before the end of the first lap and held on to it for the next three circuits before Ingram pulled alongside him at the end of lap four, the two crossing the line side-by-side just as the safety car came out to clear an accident.
Having been ahead across the line, though by less than the width of his Honda's front splitter, Cammish restarted in first when the safety car pulled into the pit lane. He was then able to edge out a gap to Ingram, scoring his and the Halfords Yuasa Racing team's third victory of the season with Ingram an impressive second.
Behind them, the battle for the final place on the rostrum gathered momentum following Team BMW driver Tom Oliphant’s exit with suspension damage.
Rory Butcher produced an impressive defensive drive at the expense of Team BMW’s Colin Turkington whose car was quicker, but in all the wrong places, as the reigning champ couldn’t mount a serious move and finished fourth to bag some valuable Championship points.
Despite his car carrying maximum success ballast Cammish again led away in Race Two but was passed by Tom Ingram who performed a sensational manoeuvre at the end of the first lap to force his way into the lead. Despite coming under increasing pressure from Cammish and then Colin Turkington (who had edged his way past Cammish mid race), the Toyota Gazoo Racing UK driver held onto first until lap 17 when a front-left puncture cruelly ended his race with just one lap to go.
But one “Cobra driver’s” misfortune proved to be another’s stroke of luck as Ingram’s demise gifted Colin Turkington his third win of the season (and the 150th BTCC podium finish of his career). Colin finished 1.2 seconds ahead of Cammish in second. Dan’s teammate, Matt Neal also had a strong race, fighting his way up the field to finish fourth and add to a strong points haul for the Halfords Yuasa Racing team.
Other “Cobra” drivers fared well, too: BTC Racing's Josh Cook was sixth, while Jake Hill recorded another strong points finish for the MB Motorsport team in seventh, and Tom Oliphant finished an impressive ninth.
Oliphant's magnificent recovery from 25th to 9th also earned the Team BMW driver pole position for race three after his finishing position was selected in the reverse grid draw.
The reverse grid draw for the final race put Neal and Cammish into sixth and eighth starting spots and at the start Neal initially dropped to seventh and Cammish 10th. But on lap six Neal and rival Rory Butcher made contact and Butcher's car was sent careering across the grass, where he smashed backwards in the Armco barrier, launching him into a barrel-roll that ended in the middle of the track at Becketts.
That red flag resulted in the cars lining up once more on the grid for a 12 lap sprint race that can only be described as one of the highlights of the season: Ollie Jackson led from the lights ahead of a hungry Tom Oliphant and the two provided a thrilling spectacle at the head of the field: There was minor contact between the two at Brooklands on the second lap, although both continued without losing position, and on lap seven Oliphant got down the inside at Copse Corner, only to run wide on exit and allow Jackson back down the inside for Becketts.
Behind them there was an equally enthralling battle for the minor places between Ash Sutton and the Hondas of Josh Cook, Tom Chilton and Dan Cammish.
As Sutton moved away from the pack, he began to challenge Oliphant who defended his place doggedly until the penultimate lap when Sutton claimed the inside line at Maggotts to nudge into second but then ran wide at Copse Corner while completing the manoeuvre – an error that was punished after the chequered flag with a 0.3 second time penalty for Sutton which meant that Oliphant was reinstated to second.
Cammish took fourth in his Team Dynamics-run Honda Civic Type-R to complete a very good day for his points tally, while Senna Proctor took sixth in his Excelr8 Motorsport Hyundai, from Josh Cook's BTC Racing Honda in seventh. Tom Chilton's BTC Honda finished in ninth and Colin Turkington was tenth.
Silverstone delivered yet again – as we head towards the next round at Croft, just 17 points divide the top three drivers in the Championship race with Tom Ingram and Tom Oliphant also still very much in the mix.