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Tom Chilton fastest in first Thruxton practice

Tom Chilton set the fastest time around Thruxton in first practice this morning as the turbo-powered cars continued to set the early pace. The Team Aon driver set a lap time of 1:18.551 to go faster than second-placed Tom Boardman by 0.213 seconds. Mat Jackson was third fastest for Airwaves Racing.

Click here for the full first practice times.

At a warm and sunny Thruxton the session was played out with the turbo cars now having been pegged back by 0.1 bar of turbo pressure. Despite this, turbo cars still occupied the top seven positions suggesting their pace has not been seriously hampered by the changes TOCA has made to the regulations. Tiems were still around 0.5 seconds slower than the fastest practice pace last year however.

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Andrew Jordan continued his strong form in practice this season to set the fourth fastest time. In fifth and sixth were the two Honda’s of Gordon Shedden and Matt Neal – although both were over half a second off the leading pace.

Tom Onslow-Cole was an impressive seventh fastest in the AmD Milltek VW, lapping in a time of 1:19.450.

Jason Plato was the top normally-aspirated driver with the eighth quickest lap. He was only just under a second off the pace however, some 0.946 seconds adrift. Just behind him were two other NA-powered racers – Rob Collard was ninth and his team-mate Alex MacDowall was tenth.

It was an encouraging practice session for Dynojet Toyota racer Frank Wrathall, who posted the 14th best time. “We were experimenting with a number of set-up ideas and learned a lot,” said Wrathall. “I’m pleased with the time and I know that there is a lot to come from me and from the Toyota in the next session. At this stage it’s all about development and learning.”

Rob Austin is again racing in the RAR Audi A4 this weekend, although he was unable to set a time during practice.

Second free practice takes place at 1225 this afternoon.

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