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Page last updated at 09:37 GMT, Monday, 27 October 2008

Priaulx's title hopes are dashed

Andy Priaulx
Priaulx's faint title hopes were finally extinguished in Japan on Sunday

Guernsey's World Touring Car champion Andy Priaulx's faint hopes of winning a third successive World Touring Car title were ended on Sunday.

Despite finishing third in the first race at the Okayama circuit in Japan, he crashed out of the second race and saw his title hopes go with it.

With two races left and only 20 points up for grabs Priaulx is 33 points off championship leader Yvan Muller.

Priaulx is fifth in the title race on 67 points, five away from fourth place.

Priaulx had qualified in 11th place in race one but with a great drive guided his BMW up to third.

Knowing he needed a good result in the second race, he gambled on slick tyres despite rain and had moved up to third place again before slipping off the track and into the gravel with three laps to go.

"We all had to gamble for race two and I went on slicks. Tom Coronel, who won, obviously made the best choice, but slick fronts and rear wets was certainly a gamble," said Priaulx.

"I needed that podium in race one after qualifying 11th, but sadly in race two I just missed my braking point.

"My RBM team did a great job getting the car back to how it was on Friday, and I could have made it two podiums, so I want to say sorry to them.

"From now on I just need to go out and get big points to move up the championship table and I am just going to look forward to Macau and not back," he added.

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see also
Race champ Priaulx receives MBE
13 Oct 08 |  Guernsey
Priaulx's title aims all but over
06 Oct 08 |  Motorsport
Priaulx has tough round in Italy
22 Sep 08 |  Motorsport
Priaulx criticises race stewards
03 Sep 08 |  Motorsport
Priaulx eyes change of WTCC rules
26 Jul 08 |  Motorsport

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