AmD Tuning’s Sam Tordoff secured pole position by just 0.030s from Dan Cammish in an interrupted British Touring Car Championship qualifying session at Thruxton.
The 2016 runner-up left it very late to top the times, setting a new qualifying lap record in the dying moments after a lengthy red flag period which saw both Tordoff and Cammish jump Team BMW stablemates Andrew Jordan and Colin Turkington.
With just under two minutes remaining, Tom Chilton and Mark Blundell made contact exiting the final chicane as the latter ran wide over the kerbs and hit the side of Chilton, breaking his suspension and spearing him into the barrier.
A lengthy delay followed, before the clock was set to five minutes and runners had another opportunity to imrpove their efforts, with Cammish initially topping the times before Tordoff secured pole position.
Jordan, who was ruled out of the races at Donington Park after being hospitalised in a heavy shunt in race one, sat on provisional pole ahead of WSR stablemate Turkington before the red flag, with the pair eventually completing the second row of the grid in third and fourth respectively.
Tordoff’s team-mate Rory Butcher was next, having initially bettered the qualifying lap record before being stripped of the lap time due to a track limit infringement, most likely at the final chicane in a session in which the majority of drivers had their best times taken away.
In sixth position was Jason Plato’s Power Maxed Racing Vauxhall Astra, with former team-mate and championship leader Ash Sutton putting in an impressive performance in seventh despite carrying maximum ballast.
Matt Neal was next despite having a disjointed session after a high-speed spin at Church wrote off a set of tyres and forced him to start the crossover process again, eventually ending up eighth.
Plato’s PMR team-mate Rob Collard lines up ninth for race one with the third Team BMW machine of Tom Oliphant completing the top ten.
The BTC Racing duo of Josh Cook and Chris Smiley line up 11th and 12th respectively, despite the former also having a high-speed slide on a hot lap.
Stephen Jelley’s older BMW 125i M Sport managed 13th position, ahead of Trade Price Cars Racing’s Jake Hill in 14th, while Donington Park’s race three winner Tom Ingram struggled to complete the top 15.
Chilton’s damaged Ford Focus RS set a best time of 22nd before his incident with Blundell, with the latter attempting to set his first time of the session after a powersteering issue hampered his efforts, eventually ending the session in 30th and seven seconds off Tordoff’s benchmark.
The opening race of the British Touring Car Championship at Thruxton is set to get underway tomorrow [19 May] at 12:10 with a 16-lap contest to kick off the action.
|1||600||I||Sam TORDOFF||Cobra Sport AmD AutoAid / RCIB Insurance||Honda Civic Type R||17||1:15.511||0.000|
|2||27||M||Dan CAMMISH||Halfords Yuasa Racing||Honda Civic Type R||12||1:15.541||0.030|
|3||77||M||Andrew JORDAN||BMW Pirtek Racing||BMW 330i M Sport||17||1:15.648||0.137|
|4||1||M||Colin TURKINGTON||Team BMW||BMW 330i M Sport||16||1:15.654||0.143|
|5||6||I||Rory BUTCHER||Cobra Sport AmD AutoAid / RCIB Insurance||Honda Civic Type R||14||1:15.724||0.213|
|6||11||M||Jason PLATO||Sterling Insurance with Power Maxed Racing||Vauxhall Astra||17||1:15.943||0.432|
|7||116||M||Ashley SUTTON||Adrian Flux Subaru Racing||Subaru Levorg||20||1:15.986||0.475|
|8||25||M||Matt NEAL||Halfords Yuasa Racing||Honda Civic Type R||16||1:15.989||0.478|
|9||9||M||Rob COLLARD||Sterling Insurance with Power Maxed Racing||Vauxhall Astra||19||1:16.039||0.528|
|10||15||M||Tom OLIPHANT||Team BMW||BMW 330i M Sport||9||1:16.043||0.532|
|11||66||I||Josh COOK||BTC Racing||Honda Civic Type R||17||1:16.098||0.587|
|12||12||I||Stephen JELLEY||Team Parker Racing||BMW 125i M Sport||15||1:16.199||0.688|
|13||24||I||Jake HILL||TradePriceCars.com||Audi S3||16||1:16.206||0.695|
|14||80||M||Tom INGRAM||Team Toyota GB with Ginsters||Toyota Corolla||16||1:16.286||0.775|
|15||22||I||Chris SMILEY||BTC Racing||Honda Civic Type R||17||1:16.339||0.828|
|16||16||I||Aiden MOFFAT||Laser Tools Racing||Mercedes-Benz A-Class||15||1:16.428||0.917|
|17||303||I||Matt SIMPSON||Simpson Racing||Honda Civic Type R||15||1:16.456||0.945|
|18||33||I||Adam MORGAN||Mac Tools with Ciceley Motorsport||Mercedes-Benz A-Class||17||1:16.485||0.974|
|19||48||I||Ollie JACKSON||Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Gallagher||Ford Focus RS||15||1:16.493||0.982|
|20||18||M||Senna PROCTOR||Adrian Flux Subaru Racing||Subaru Levorg||20||1:16.503||0.992|
|21||32||I||Daniel ROWBOTTOM||Cataclean Racing with Ciceley Motorsport||Mercedes-Benz A-Class||14||1:16.779||1.268|
|22||3||I||Tom CHILTON||Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Gallagher||Ford Focus RS||11||1:17.000||1.489|
|23||31||I||Jack GOFF||RCIB Insurance with Fox Transport||Volkswagen CC||15||1:17.168||1.657|
|24||28||I||Nicolas HAMILTON||ROKiT Racing with Motorbase||Ford Focus RS||17||1:17.310||1.799|
|25||19||I||Bobby THOMPSON||GKR Scaffolding with Autobrite Direct||Volkswagen CC||11||1:17.379||1.868|
|26||37||I||Rob SMITH||Exceler8 Motorsport||MG6||18||1:17.797||2.286|
|27||777||I||Michael CREES||GKR Scaffolding with Autobrite Direct||Volkswagen CC||14||1:18.750||3.239|
|28||4||I||Sam OSBORNE||Exceler8 Motorsport||MG6||18||1:18.847||3.336|
|29||41||I||Carl BOARDLEY||RCIB Insurance with Fox Transport||Volkswagen CC||12||1:19.276||3.765|
|30||8||I||Mark BLUNDELL||TradePriceCars.com||Audi S3||3||1:22.556||7.045|