Motorbase Performance’s Rory Butcher secured the first pole position for the new-for-2020 Ford Focus ST in qualifying for the opening British Touring Car Championship race at Brands Hatch.
The Scot managed the benchmark time of 1:31.111 early in the half-hour session, on just his fourth tour of the 2.4-mile Brands Hatch Grand Prix circuit.
It was a memorable session for the Kent-based Motorbase outfit on home soil, securing a 1-3 with Ollie Jackson heading the second row, with the pair split by Dan Cammish who was just 0.031 adrift of Butcher.
It was a solid effort from Cammish, who was pleased with a front-row start given he carried 54kg aboard his Team Dynamics-run Honda Civic Type R around the fast-and-flowing track.
In fourth position was practice pacesetter Jake Hill, who has used his local knowledge to good effect throughout the day.
The Kent racer looked to improve on his time in the final third of the session, but have a grassy moment at Sheene Curve to ultimately end qualifying just half a tenth adrift of pole.
Reigning champion and current standings leader Colin Turkington was another to put an impressive performance in while carrying weight, ending the session 0.342 off Butcher’s pole lap.
He heads the third row ahead of team-mate Tom Oliphant, with the Team BMW pair actually setting identical times of 1:31.453, with Turkington getting the position by virtue of setting the time earlier in the session.
Senna Proctor carried his momentum from strong practice pace, which he translated into seventh position in the Excelr8 Motorsport Hyundai i30 Fastback N, just under half a tenth quicker than Tom Ingram’s Toyota Corolla in eighth position.
Josh Cook placed ninth ahead of BTC Racing team-mate Tom Chilton, who will keep him company on the fifth row of the grid for the opening race tomorrow, while fellow FK8 Honda Civic runner Matt Neal could only manage 11th after struggling throughout the day with setup.
He placed ahead of Stephen Jelley in 12th, with Ciceley Motorsport’s Adam Morgan another runner to have a grassy moment on the exit of Sheene Curve, gathering it up on the dry grass to keep his A-Class out of the barriers.
Donington Park race three winner Ash Sutton appeared to struggle in the session, and only managed 14th after a few spectacular attempts.
His Laser Tools Racing-run Infiniti Q50 had a water leak in second practice, limiting his running to only six laps and perhaps highlighting why he will start on the seventh row of the grid.
Chris Smiley, who secured Hyundai’s maiden series podium last time out in Leicestershire, completed the top 15 runners ahead of Sam Osborne, Bobby Thompson and Michael Crees.
Crees had initially set a time good enough for tenth place, but would have the time removed for exceeding track limits.
The opening British Touring Car Championship race at the iconic Brands Hatch Grand Prix circuit is scheduled to get underway tomorrow [9 August] at 10:50 BST.
|1||6||I||Rory BUTCHER||Motorbase Performance||Ford Focus ST||10||1:31.111||0.000|
|2||27||M||Dan CAMMISH||Halfords Yuasa Racing||Honda Civic Type-R||11||1:31.142||0.031|
|3||48||I||Ollie JACKSON||Motorbase Performance||Ford Focus ST||12||1:31.149||0.038|
|4||24||I||Jake HILL||MB Motorsport accelerated by Blue Square||Honda Civic Type-R||13||1:31.166||0.055|
|5||1||M||Colin TURKINGTON||Team BMW||BMW 330i M Sport||12||1:31.453||0.342|
|6||15||M||Tom OLIPHANT||Team BMW||BMW 330i M Sport||15||1:31.453||0.342|
|7||18||I||Senna PROCTOR||Excelr8 Motorsport||Hyundai i30 Fastback N||13||1:31.527||0.416|
|8||80||M||Tom INGRAM||Toyota Gazoo Racing UK with Ginsters||Toyota Corolla||12||1:31.572||0.461|
|9||66||I||Josh COOK||BTC Racing||Honda Civic Type-R||13||1:31.661||0.550|
|10||3||I||Tom CHILTON||BTC Racing||Honda Civic Type-R||14||1:31.684||0.573|
|11||25||M||Matt NEAL||Halfords Yuasa Racing||Honda Civic Type-R||13||1:31.690||0.579|
|12||12||I||Stephen JELLEY||Team Parker Racing||BMW 125i M Sport||14||1:31.729||0.618|
|13||32||I||Adam MORGAN||Carlube Triple R Racing with Mac Tools||Mercedes-Benz A-Class||14||1:31.758||0.647|
|14||116||I||Ashley SUTTON||Laser Tools Racing||Infiniti Q50||15||1:31.869||0.758|
|15||22||I||Chris SMILEY||Excelr8 Motorsport||Hyundai i30 Fastback N||15||1:31.884||0.773|
|16||4||I||Sam OSBORNE||MB Motorsport accelerated by Blue Square||Honda Civic Type-R||12||1:31.931||0.820|
|17||19||I||Bobby THOMPSON||GKR TradePriceCars.com||Audi S3||10||1:32.037||0.926|
|18||777||I||Michael CREES||The Clever Baggers with BTC Racing||Honda Civic Type-R||14||1:32.057||0.946|
|19||31||I||Jack GOFF||RCIB Insurance Racing with Fox Transport||Volkswagen CC||10||1:32.107||0.996|
|20||180||I||James GORNALL||GKR TradePriceCars.com||Audi S3||14||1:32.193||1.082|
|21||16||I||Aiden MOFFAT||Laser Tools Racing||Infiniti Q50||16||1:32.379||1.268|
|22||41||I||Carl BOARDLEY||Team HARD.||BMW 125i M Sport||16||1:32.401||1.290|
|23||44||I||Andy NEATE||Motorbase Performance||Ford Focus ST||14||1:32.491||1.380|
|24||34||I||Ollie BROWN||RCIB Insurance Racing with Fox Transport||Volkswagen CC||15||1:33.133||2.022|
|25||28||I||Nicolas HAMILTON||ROKiT Racing with Team HARD.||Volkswagen CC||11||1:33.248||2.137|
|26||32||I||Jack BUTEL||Carlube Triple R Racing with Mac Tools||Mercedes-Benz A-Class||15||1:34.440||3.329|