Mike Bushell fastest in first practice on series return at Oulton Park

Series returnee Mike Bushell overcame mixed conditions to top the times in the opening British Touring Car Championship practice session at Oulton Park.

The 40-minute session started off almost completely dry with all runners initially heading out on slicks before rain fell intermittently from then on.

The majority of drivers then ran wet tyres in ever-changing conditions, with Jake Hill heading the times for the majority of the session before several improvements came in the final quarter.

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While most drivers did not set representative times, it was Bushell’s Vauxhall Astra that would end on top with a time of 1:32.177 on his and the team’s return to the series this weekend.

Getting to grips with the Astra with 19 laps completed across the session, Bushell then strapped on slicks as the track improved in the dying minutes to produce a lap time which put him comfortably clear out front.

Another late improver was Michael Crees in his BTC Racing Honda Civic, albeit 1.7 seconds off Bushell’s benchmark, while Dan Cammish was exactly two seconds off the pace in his Team Dynamics-run Honda.

Cammish, who suffered a double DNF last time out at Brands Hatch, would place ahead of Tom Ingram’s Toyota Corolla, with Rory Butcher’s Motorbase Performance Ford Focus rounding out the top five.

The second BTC Racing Honda of Tom Chilton was sixth after sitting in the top three earlier on, 0.025 quicker than Jack Goff in the Team HARD Volkswagen CC.

Senna Proctor was next in his Excelr8 Motorsport Hyundai i30 Fastback N in eighth position, while Hill would eventually slip to ninth having led the early running.

Completing the top ten runners was Laser Tools Racing’s Ash Sutton, with the pair of Infinitis opting for different tyres across the pair of cars early in the session, with Sutton in tenth and team-mate Aiden Moffat ending up 19th.

In 11th position was Carl Boardley’s BMW 125i M Sport with Matt Neal a tenth-and-a-half further back ahead of fellow FK8 Honda Civic Type R runner Josh Cook.

Brands Hatch podium finisher Ollie Jackson would place 14th ahead of reigning champion Colin Turkington, who completed the top 15 runners ahead of team-mate Tom Oliphant.

The second British Touring Car Championship practice session is scheduled to get underway at 12:25 BST.

Session results

POS NO DRIVER NAT ENTRANT CAR LAPS TIME GAP
1 21 Mike BUSHELL Power Maxed Car Care Racing Vauxhall Astra 19 1:32.177 0.000
2 777 Michael CREES The Clever Baggers with BTC Racing Honda Civic Type-R 15 1:33.904 1.727
3 27 Dan CAMMISH Halfords Yuasa Racing Honda Civic Type-R 15 1:34.177 2.000
4 80 Tom INGRAM Toyota Gazoo Racing UK with Ginsters Toyota Corolla 13 1:34.447 2.270
5 6 Rory BUTCHER Motorbase Performance Ford Focus ST 13 1:34.553 2.376
6 3 Tom CHILTON BTC Racing Honda Civic Type-R 15 1:34.663 2.486
7 31 Jack GOFF RCIB Insurance Racing with Fox Transport Volkswagen CC 11 1:34.688 2.511
8 18 Senna PROCTOR Excelr8 Motorsport Hyundai i30 Fastback N 15 1:34.882 2.705
9 24 Jake HILL MB Motorsport accelerated by Blue Square Honda Civic Type-R 12 1:34.924 2.747
10 116 Ashley SUTTON Laser Tools Racing Infiniti Q50 15 1:35.055 2.878
11 41 Carl BOARDLEY Team HARD. BMW 125i M Sport 14 1:35.562 3.385
12 25 Matt NEAL Halfords Yuasa Racing Honda Civic Type-R 16 1:35.733 3.556
13 66 Josh COOK BTC Racing Honda Civic Type-R 14 1:35.785 3.608
14 48 Ollie JACKSON Motorbase Performance Ford Focus ST 16 1:35.914 3.737
15 1 Colin TURKINGTON Team BMW BMW 330i M Sport 16 1:35.959 3.782
16 15 Tom OLIPHANT Team BMW BMW 330i M Sport 15 1:36.018 3.841
17 19 Bobby THOMPSON GKR TradePriceCars.com Audi S3 16 1:36.317 4.140
18 22 Chris SMILEY Excelr8 Motorsport Hyundai i30 Fastback N 14 1:36.333 4.156
19 16 Aiden MOFFAT Laser Tools Racing Infiniti Q50 14 1:36.435 4.258
20 12 Stephen JELLEY Team Parker Racing BMW 125i M Sport 13 1:36.645 4.468
21 34 Ollie BROWN RCIB Insurance Racing with Fox Transport Volkswagen CC 19 1:37.155 4.978
22 44 Andy NEATE Motorbase Performance Ford Focus ST 16 1:37.215 5.038
23 32 Jack BUTEL Carlube Triple R Racing with Mac Tools Mercedes-Benz A-Class 16 1:37.331 5.154
24 28 Nicolas HAMILTON ROKiT Racing with Team HARD. Volkswagen CC 13 1:37.436 5.259
25 180 James GORNALL GKR TradePriceCars.com Audi S3 11 1:37.743 5.566
26 32 Adam MORGAN Carlube Triple R Racing with Mac Tools Mercedes-Benz A-Class 14 1:37.798 5.621
27 4 Sam OSBORNE MB Motorsport accelerated by Blue Square Honda Civic Type-R 15 1:37.819 5.642
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