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Neal knocked off his perch at top
10:20am Thursday 19th September 2013 in Sport
MATT Neal was toppled from the top of the British Touring Car Championship standings after a disastrous weekend at Rockingham.
The Droitwich-based three-time champion never properly recovered from a spin in race one as he struggled throughout.
The Honda Yuasa driver was replaced at the top of the rankings by Andrew Jordan, who won two races, and has slipped down to fourth.
The Hondas topped the timesheets in damp practice, but things were more difficult in the dry.
Shedden qualified fifth, just behind Jordan, while Neal was seventh despite being within half-a-second of pole.
Race one was damp and Jordan, Shedden and Neal all moved forward in the early stages.
But a spin during an early safety car period dropped Neal to the back, from which he could only recover to 14th.
“It was an error on my behalf, I got on a bit of oil and it pirouetted on me,” said Neal.
In race two, Neal did a superb job in the early stages to get up to fifth, but a steering problem sent him out of the race at Deene.
Another fine recovery was better rewarded in the final race, with Neal coming home seventh after starting on row 12.
He will be hoping for a better showing in the next three rounds at Silverstone on September 28 and 29.
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