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Getting personal

Both on and off the track, it looks like there’s going to be a dramatic finale to the 2011 BTCC championship.

The last meeting at Rockingham showed just how tense the fight for championship is, with rivals Jason Plato and Matt Neal squaring off after qualifying on Sunday.

The top three drivers are almost inseparable: Matt Neal and Gordon Shedden are tied on 204 points, while Jason Plato on 180 points is still in with a shout. The final two rounds are at Brands Hatch on 2 October and Silverstone two weeks afterwards.

While Plato is comfortable about his prospects at Brands Hatch, he’s worried about the season's final race at Silverstone and what will happen to the naturally aspirated cars there. "I think we can be strong again at Brands Hatch,’ he said. I still don't see how we'll be able to match the turbocharged cars at Silverstone. We'll of course give it everything but it's really for the Honda drivers to lose now.’

And after Jason Plato’s and Matt Neal’s scuffle on Sunday at Rockingham, close attention will be paid to how it pans out between them.

Both drivers were fined £1,000, docked three penalty points on their race licenses and each was given a six-place grid penalty (suspended until next season) as a result of the incident.

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