For the entire race he was under pressure from the various BMW’s and Subaru’s that have been front runners all day but resisted all the pressure from his rivals to take the win.
Intitially Jackson led the race from Rob Collard and Colin Turkington. To Jackson’s advantage, the two started fighting over second, giving him a small amount of breathing space. There was then a brief safety car period to retrieve Ashley Sutton’s MG which had been spun into the tyres.
Then on lap eight, Turkington and Collard made contact, sending Collard’s BMW sliding. As Collard tried to straighten his car out the two hit again. This time the contact sent Collard over the grass, into the tyres and out of the race. Turkington recovered to continue in the race but now was nearly a lap down and out of contention for any points. The incident was a big points blow to both the drivers title ambitions.
Unfortunately for Jackson, Tordoff and Plato now replaced Collard and Turkington as the cars trying to take his lead. For the rest of the race the three stayed together with Tordoff making multiple attempts to out brake the Motorbase Focus at the hairpin. Although he got close on several occasions he wasn’t able to make the move as Jackson could get enough of a run going into the straight that he remained ahead.
The lead trio then became a quartet as Gordon Shedden caught them. Shedden usually wins at his local circuit and he looked to be hoping to repeat team mate Neal’s success in race two.
Unfortunately for Shedden, the trio ahead were staying mostly line astern leaving the Scotsman with no opportunity to find a way past.
The entire top four were separated by 1.2 seconds as they took the chequered flag. Jackson has now won the most races of any driver this season, he was very happy with his hard fought victory;
“That was mega,” said Jackson. “He wasn’t going to get that win off me! I was determined it would be ours. A rear-wheel drive car around Knockhill is hard to beat so when I saw Rob [Collard] go, I thought ‘great’. Then young Sam [Tordoff] came at us but I managed to hold him off. It was fantastic really. He wasn’t going to get past me! It was a tough battle. We had the legs in sector one but he was quicker with traction through the back straight, Clarke and out of the hairpin. He drove a good race and fair play to him for the way he went about it.”
Behind the leading four was Matt Neal, taking another storng points finish on what has been a good day for the Honda driver after a difficult qualifying day on Saturday for the team.
Rob Austin once again scored well with sixth place. He finally seems to have adapted to front wheel drive and looks set to score further strong finishes for Handy Motorsport in the remainder of the 2016 season.
Mercedes duo Adam Morgan and Aiden Moffat battled for most of the race, Morgan eventually coming out on top to take seventh. In the later stages, Moffat’s eighth place came under threat from the Pirtek (Motorbase run) Ford Focus of Andrew Jordan but he was able to hold the former champion off. Jack Goff was the final finisher in the top ten.
Mercedes pair Adam Morgan and Aiden Moffat fought throughout with the WIX Racing man eventually getting the better of his younger Laser Tools Racing stablemate. Andrew Jordan and Jack Goff rounded out the top ten.
Dave Newsham’s strong return continued as he scored points in eleventh. The Inverness based Honorary Scotsman is hoping for a full time return to the championship in 2017. Tom Ingram took twelfth in what has been a mixed weekend for the Speedworks driver with his best finish of Knockhill 2016 being fourth in race one.
James Cole scored more points in his Subaru in thirteenth just ahead of Dan Welch in the Proton. The Welch Motorsport team had built almost an entirely new car in the two weeks since Snetterton and a points finish was a reward for the teams hard work. Plus this time he leaves with his car intact!
Jake Hill took the final points in fifteenth.
Mark Howard was named the Jack Sears trophy winner for this weekend, (The first after the sad death of Jack Sears) having had the best combined results from all three races of any of the rookie drivers. He’d had a dramatic race three when he collided with Eurotech’s Jeff Smith coming out of the hairpin.
Smith’s car was spun into the tyres and Smith found himself unable to restart when the gear stick broke during the incident. Smith has had a difficult weekend despite showing top ten pace he only has a single point scored in race one. Team mate Depper had a similarly tough weekend although scored two points in race one.
Sam Tordoff still leads the championship but now from Matt Neal as Rob Collard drops to third, his race three non finish costing him in the championship. Shedden is fourth with Jackson, Turkington and Plato fifth, sixth and seventh respectively.
WSR lead the manufacturers and teams championships from Honda in both cases.
The independents battle is lead by Andrew Jordan from team mate Mat Jackson and Tom Ingram in third. Motorbase lead the independent teams championship from Speedworks and Wix Racing.
Ashley Sutton is the leader in the Jack Sears Trophy for Rookie drivers from Michael Epps and Matt Simpson.
1 Mat JACKSON (GBR) Motorbase Performance 25:19.259 (81.05 mph)
2 Sam TORDOFF (GBR) Team JCT600 Racing with GardX +0.236s
3 Jason PLATO (GBR) Silverline Subaru BMR Racing +0.804s
4 Gordon SHEDDEN (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +1.297s
5 Matt NEAL (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +2.256s
6 Rob AUSTIN (GBR) Handy Motorsport +3.933s
7 Adam MORGAN (GBR) WIX Racing +4.326s
8 Aiden MOFFAT (GBR) Laser Tools Racing +8.875s
9 Andrew JORDAN (GBR) Motorbase Performance +9.316s
10 Jack GOFF (GBR) Team IHG Rewards Club +10.196s
11 Dave NEWSHAM (GBR) Power Maxed Racing +11.386s
12 Tom INGRAM (GBR) Speedworks Motorsport +11.590s
13 James COLE (GBR) Silverline Subaru BMR Racing +11.896s
14 Dan WELCH (GBR) Goodestone Racing +12.758s
15 Jake HILL (GBR) RCIB Insurance Racing +16.117s
16 Martin DEPPER (GBR) Eurotech Racing +17.215s
17 Matt SIMPSON (GBR) Speedworks Motorsport +21.381s
18 Aron SMITH (IRL) BKR +24.587s
19 Ollie JACKSON (GBR) AmD Tuning.com +27.894s
20 Michael EPPS (GBR) RCIB Insurance Racing +30.503s
21 Alex MARTIN (GBR) Dextra Racing +31.271s
22 Stewart LINES (GBR) Maximum Motorsport +31.513s
23 Mark HOWARD (GBR) BKR +47.219s
24 Colin TURKINGTON (GBR) Silverline Subaru BMR Racing +47.847s
25 Warren SCOTT (GBR) Silverline Subaru BMR Racing +1 lap
DNF Hunter ABBOTT (GBR) Power Maxed Racing +13 laps
DNF Josh COOK (GBR) MG Racing RCIB Insurance +19 laps
DNF Robert COLLARD (GBR) Team JCT600 Racing with GardX +19 laps
DNF Jeff SMITH (GBR) Eurotech Racing +21 laps
DNF Ash SUTTON (GBR) MG Racing RCIB Insurance By Marc Waller