Famous Five... Honda BTCC winners

01st March 2018
Henry Hope-Frost

While the mainstream media harps on about the ‘beast from the east’ when referring to the current cold snap, in the motorsport world a real ‘beast from the east’ has broken cover ahead of 2018’s 60th anniversary British Touring Car Championship season.


Yes, benchmark squad Honda has this week revealed its new challenger, the Civic Type R, and it looks much more menacing than the freezing temperatures and widespread snowfall.

Veteran racer Matt Neal will once again lead the team for his 28th consecutive season in Britain’s biggest series, but the triple-champion Midlander will have a new teammate in the Team Dynamics-run, Halfords-sponsored squad – for the first time since 2005.

Fellow three-time title winner Gordon Shedden has departed the team to race for Audi in the World Touring Car Cup this year, leaving big shoes to fill in the second Civic.

Enter former British Formula Ford champ and double Porsche Carrera Cup title winner Dan Cammish, who’ll make his BTCC debut alongside Neal. The 28-year-old Yorkshireman has already declared that if his new mount is as fast as it looks, he’ll be in very good shape come the start of the season at Brands Hatch on April 8th.

Cammish will be aiming to become the 16th driver to win a BTCC race in a Honda since the Japanese marque first tasted victory during the British Grand Prix-support meeting with the late, great David Leslie at Silverstone in 1996. Who, we wondered, are the five most successful Honda pedallers who’ve contributed to the 157 wins during those past two decades?


5th – Tom Chilton (7 wins)

Chilton was just 19 when he took his maiden BTCC win, in a Lego Star Wars-branded Civic at Silverstone in 2004, making him the youngest race winner in series history. He took another later that year and followed it up with four victories in Arena Motorsport’s Civic in 2005. That performance landed him a works Vauxhall drive for 2006, but he’d be back in a Civic for 2008, winning the final round on the Brands Hatch GP circuit.


4th – Andrew Jordan (11 wins)

Our resident track-tester was a young rallycrosser and one-make racer when his father Mike took his sole BTCC win in a Honda Integra at Mondello Park in 2006. Four years later, AJ was a winner himself, for Vauxhall. For 2012, armed with a Civic, he won at Snetterton, setting him up for a title challenge in 2013. Run by the family Eurotech squad and backed by long-time sponsor Pirtek, he took six wins and the title in a dramatic final-race showdown. In his final year with the Civic, in 2014, he secured four more wins for the Honda marque.


3rd – James Thompson (13 wins)

‘Thommo’ was a young superstar of the heady days of Supertouring. Armed with the Accord, he won once in 1997, four times in both ’98 and ’99 and once more in the final year of the boom-and-bust formula in 2000. After snaring two BTCC titles with Vauxhall in the first half of the noughties, he made a return to Honda, this time with Team Dynamics. He won three races in the Garmin-branded Civic during a part-season assault.


2nd – Gordon Shedden (48 wins)

Scot Shedden, universally known as ‘Flash’ in the BTCC paddock, formed one half of the series’ most successful partnership. Between 2006 and 2017, he and Dynamics team-mate Matt Neal won countless races. Shedden’s breakthrough came at Oulton Park in May ’06, in the Integra, and, with the exception of 2009, he’s been a winner in every season since then and lifted three drivers’ titles – in 2012, ’15 and ’16. He’s one of only six drivers to secure three crowns, sharing the accolade with Bill McGovern, Frank Gardner, Bernard Unett, Win Percy and Neal.


1st – Matt Neal (54 wins)

Very much part of the fabric of the modern-day BTCC, Neal began in the early 1990s and, more than a quarter of a century later, he’s still a winner. He passed Andy Rouse’s tally of 60 wins in 2017, with only long-time nemesis Jason Plato’s astounding record haul of 96 victories still to aim for. Neal’s record victory run with Honda started in 2003, with the Civic, and he shows no sign of slowing down, at the age of 51. On his day, he’s a match for drivers less than half that age and the three-time champ is sure to give new team-mate Dan Cammish a hard time in 2018. 

Honourable mentions go to the other 10 Honda winners

Dan Eaves – 6 wins

Gabriele Tarquini – 4 wins

Gareth Howell – 3 wins

Tom Kristensen – 3 wins

David Leslie – 3 wins

Jack Goff – 1 win

Mike Jordan – 1 win

Peter Kox – 1 win

Alan Morrison – 1 win

Andy Priaulx – 1 win

Photography courtesy of LAT Images

  • Honda

  • btcc

  • Andrew Jordan

  • matt neal

  • gordon shedden

  • jordan_goodwood_btcc_22052017_list__060.jpg


    Andrew Jordan: BTCC 2017, Oulton Park – "Now that’s the sort of weekend I go racing for!"

  • btcc-2020-season-preview-jep-2019-motorsport-images-main-goodwood-16032020.jpg


    Eight reasons to watch the BTCC in 2020

  • goodwood-speedweek-driver-list-andre-lotterer-revival-2019-drew-gibson-main-goodwood-24092020.jpg

    Goodwood SpeedWeek

    Updated: Who is driving at Goodwood SpeedWeek?