Matt finish at BTCC Croft – Click above to watch the video after the jump

To the casual observer, it might appear that there's only a handful of racing series in the world. F1, NASCAR, maybe WRC. But the true racing fanatic knows there's a lot more than that. There are open-wheel series (such as Indy Car) at different levels in countries around the world. There's motorbike racing, ice racing, truck racing, and, of course, there's touring cars.

The European equivalent to stock cars, touring cars account for some of the most down-to-the-wire, wheel-to-wheel racing action known to man, from DTM in Germany to V8 Supercars in Australia. But this weekend's season-opener in the British Touring Car Championship was about as nail-biting as it comes.

The race at Croft Circuit in North Yorkshire this weekend was punctuated by intermittent rain as various drivers in the expanded field opted for different tire choices. Some went for rain tires, some went for slicks, but Mat Jackson, piloting a Ford Focus, put slicks on the driving wheels up front and wets on the rears. After a mid-race accident, the safety car was withdrawn as the track began to dry and Jackson's gambit paid off as he climbed up the field.

With just a few laps to go, Jackson climbed up to fourth behind Jason Plato (he of Fifth Gear fame) in the Chevy Cruze, Rob Collard in the BMW 3 Series and two-time series champion Matt Neal in the Honda Civic. Jackson picked his way past Plato and then past Collard, but coming down the front straight to the finish line it was as close as it gets: a photo finish of 0.055 seconds. So which Matt took the win? Follow the jump to find out, and in the process witness some of the closest racing action you'll ever see.

I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.

    • 1 Second Ago
      Jon Harney
      • 4 Years Ago
      You guys suck. This is race 1 from round 5 at Croft. NOT the season opener... Lets do some better reporting please.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Since you mentioned some of the different racing series, what is the chance that you guys could dedicate an entire post/article to explaining what/where all of them are? I confess that I'm terribly interested but don't know where to even start with researching them, because one seems to influence the other and I just get plum lost...
        Jorge Duran
        • 4 Years Ago
        I'd be ok with this as well. I'd really like to get into BTCC but I have no idea where to start.
      Ralph Williams
      • 4 Years Ago
      That's what I call racing
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Ralph Williams
        So Hondas, BMWs, Chevys, Fords... racing in slick conditions with their headlights on is racing? Did you hear that NASCAR?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Season opener as in round 5?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Jackson was a madman on the last lap, very impressive.
      • 4 Years Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      If that's the season opener what the hell is this? Tinpot journalism.
      Connor McLane
      • 4 Years Ago
      Got my heart rate up about 50 bpm
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Connor McLane
        From a medical professional: unless you're an athlete or training like one; 50 bpm is bradycardia. You should get that checked out.
      • 4 Years Ago
      's Okay I guess. But still rather unexciting compared to classic BTCC:
      Andre Neves
      • 4 Years Ago
      That was amazing. Entertainment you can't get from watching cars driving in ovals hehe.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Goes to show you how amazing car racing is when 0.055 seconds is the equivalent of over 1/2 a car length. That's crazy!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Now THAT'S how you fight for position. He had the guys in front of him looking ALL OVER their shoulders.
    • Load More Comments
    Share This Photo X