In the late stages of the 27-lap race, Neal retired with engine failure, while O’Neill, who had managed to outbrake Thompson into the Esses, spoiled it for himself by running off-track and dropping to fifth.
The new champion crossed the line in the third to guarantee title celebrations up on the podium, a whisker ahead of poleman Andy Priaulx in the Honda Civic. Second went to the MG ZS of Warren Hughes, while Priaulx’s team-mate Alan Morrison stayed out of trouble to notch his maiden BTCC win.
British Touring Car Championship – Donington Park, round 20
1 Alan Morrison (GB) – Honda Civic Type-R, 27 laps
2 Warren Hughes (GB) – MG ZS, +12.71s
3 James Thompson (GB) – Vauxhall Astra Coupé, +23.00s
4 Andy Priaulx (GB) – Honda Civic Type-R, +23.11s
5 Paul O’Neill (GB) – Vauxhall Astra Coupé, +28.30s
6 David Leslie (GB) – Proton Impian, +33.81s
Photography courtesy of LAT Images