Rob Austin leads the way in opening Oulton Park practice

Rob Austin leads the way in opening Oulton Park practice

Photo: PSP Images

Rob Austin’s HMS Racing-run Alfa Romeo Giulietta topped the timesheets in the opening British Touring Car Championship practice session at Oulton Park.

An effort of 1:26.300 around the 2.2 mile Island circuit posted on his first run was enough to edge out Tom Ingram’s Speedworks Motorsport Toyota Avensis by a tenth of a second.

Tom Chilton put the Ford Focus RS in third, a mere sixteen thousandths further adrift, with a fully recovered Andrew Jordan fourth in the Pirtek-backed BMW 1-series.

A pair of hatchback-shaped Honda Civic Type Rs came next, with BTC Norlin’s Chris Smiley barely separated from Eurotech’s Matt Simpson, 0.006 seconds the gap.

Aiden Moffat’s Mercedes A-Class was seventh ahead of the sister Eurotech machine of Brett Smith and six-time Oulton Park winner Colin Turkington (Team BMW).

Jack Goff rounded out the top ten, with current championship leader Adam Morgan down in 19th on a circuit that has never traditionally favoured the Ciceley Motorsport racer.

Fellow local racer Tom Oliphant did well to post the 11th fastest time, however, in the third Mercedes.

Regular front-runners Dan Cammish, Matt Neal, Sam Tordoff and Rob Collard all struggled in the midfield, as did reigning champion Ash Sutton down in 15th in the Subaru Levorg GT.

Jason Plato’s struggles continued, with the double champion just 30th and some 1.6 seconds off the pace as Team BMR continue to overcome problems on the #99 machine.

The session largely passed without incident for the majority of the field, a gearbox oil leak on Rory Butcher’s AmD-run MG6 GT the most dramatic incident.

The action reconvenes with second practice at 12:10 BST.

Session results

POS NO DRIVER NAT ENTRANT CAR LAPS TIME GAP
1 11 Rob AUSTIN DUO Motorsport with HMS Racing Alfa Romeo Giulietta 17 1:26.300 0.000
2 80 Tom INGRAM Speedworks Motorsport Toyota Avensis 18 1:26.401 0.101
3 3 Tom CHILTON Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Gallagher Ford Focus RS 16 1:26.417 0.117
4 77 Andrew JORDAN BMW Pirtek Racing BMW 125i M Sport 16 1:26.519 0.219
5 22 Chris SMILEY BTC Norlin Racing Honda Civic Type R 21 1:26.545 0.245
6 303 Matt SIMPSON Simpson Racing Honda Civic Type R 15 1:26.551 0.251
7 16 Aiden MOFFAT Laser Tools Racing Mercedes-Benz A-Class 22 1:26.597 0.297
8 39 Brett SMITH WIX Racing with Eurotech Honda Civic Type R 17 1:26.600 0.300
9 2 Colin TURKINGTON Team BMW BMW 125i M Sport 17 1:26.667 0.367
10 31 Jack GOFF WIX Racing with Eurotech Honda Civic Type R 20 1:26.669 0.369
11 27 Dan CAMMISH Halfords Yuasa Racing Honda Civic Type R 18 1:26.687 0.387
12 15 Tom OLIPHANT Ciceley Motorsport Mercedes-Benz A-Class 20 1:26.696 0.396
13 21 Mike BUSHELL Trade Price Cars with Brisky Racing Volkswagen CC 12 1:26.697 0.397
14 25 Matt NEAL Halfords Yuasa Racing Honda Civic Type R 16 1:26.754 0.454
15 1 Ashley SUTTON Adrian Flux Subaru Racing Subaru Levorg GT 16 1:26.772 0.472
16 600 Sam TORDOFF Team GardX Racing with Motorbase Ford Focus RS 16 1:26.786 0.486
17 66 Josh COOK Power Maxed TAG Racing Vauxhall Astra 12 1:26.789 0.489
18 20 James COLE Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Gallagher Ford Focus RS 17 1:26.914 0.614
19 33 Adam MORGAN MAC Tools with Ciceley Motorsport Mercedes-Benz A-Class 20 1:26.946 0.646
20 26 Daniel LLOYD BTC Norlin Racing Honda Civic Type R 17 1:26.979 0.679
21 18 Senna PROCTOR Power Maxed TAG Racing Vauxhall Astra 17 1:27.066 0.766
22 5 Rob COLLARD Team BMW BMW 125i M Sport 17 1:27.074 0.774
23 48 Ollie JACKSON AmD with Cobra Exhausts Audi S3 18 1:27.214 0.914
24 60 Stephen JELLEY Team Parker Racing BMW 125i M Sport 21 1:27.265 0.965
25 24 Jake HILL Trade Price Cars with Brisky Racing Volkswagen CC 8 1:27.316 1.016
26 6 Rory BUTCHER AmD with AutoAid / RCIB Insurance Racing MG 6 11 1:27.329 1.029
27 12 Tom BOARDMAN AmD with AutoAid / RCIB Insurance Racing MG 6 9 1:27.371 1.071
28 44 Michael CAINE Team HARD. with Trade Price Cars Volkswagen CC 8 1:27.606 1.306
29 23 Sam SMELT AmD with Cobra Exhausts Audi S3 21 1:27.752 1.452
30 99 Jason PLATO Adrian Flux Subaru Racing Subaru Levorg GT 12 1:27.950 1.650
31 19 Bobby THOMPSON Team HARD. with Trade Price Cars Volkswagen CC 9 1:28.499 2.199
32 28 Josh PRICE Autoglym Academy Racing Subaru Levorg GT 9 1:29.052 2.752