Dan Rowbottom completes Focus clean-sweep at Thruxton
Dan Rowbottom ensured a clean-sweep of wins for the Ford Focus at Thruxton with a battling drive in the reverse grid race for his first victory of the BTCC season.
Rowbottom had started the race from fifth on the grid having been given a three place grid penalty following a clash with Ronan Pearson in race two, but was quickly on the move at the start as he moved up into fourth on lap one before clearing the Toyota of Ricky Collard on lap two to move into third spot.
Once the NAPA Racing man had got ahead of Aiden Moffat’s Honda at the complex on lap five, he set off after leader Adam Morgan, who had built a handy lead from pole in his WSR-run BMW. However, Rowbottom was able to hunt down his rival before diving down the inside going into Church on lap ten.
Once out front, Rowbottom raced away from the BMW to take his first win for the Motorbase-run team and extend its own run of success so far in 2023.
Morgan would have to settle for second spot, with Moffat taking third but only after he managed to somehow keep a train of cars behind for the majority of the race. Colin Turkington would try more than once to get ahead but couldn’t find a way through and had to settle for fourth, with Collard and Aron Taylor-Smith rounding out the top six.
As had been the case in the earlier two races, Rory Butcher took seventh in his Speedworks-run Toyota ahead of Dan Cammish, with Tom Ingram grabbing ninth late on from Jake Hill.
Ingram took advantage of Hill trying to get ahead of Cammish to find a way past the BMW, ensuring his was able to take points out of earlier double winner Sutton – who failed to make ground from twelfth on the grid as he followed Josh Cook’s Honda from start-to-finish.