Toyota Gazoo Racing UK’s Tom Ingram secured pole position for the British Touring Car Championship season finale at Brands Hatch.
The 2018 runner-up emerged on top after a slippy session in which changeable conditions caused incidents aplenty, with many cars skating off into the gravel traps at Paddock Hill Bend and Clearways, causing four red flags stoppages – with the final interruption ending the session prematurely with just two minutes remaining.
Following an off for practice pacesetter Jake Hill within the final ten minutes of the session, it was Rory Butcher who knocked erstwhile provisional polesitter Ash Sutton off the top spot, before Ingram’s benchmark time of 54.950s meant he went just 0.024s quicker.
The Scot’s Motorbase-run Ford Focus ST will line up alongside the Toyota Corolla on the front row for race one tomorrow, with the pair still in mathematical contention for the title, while championship protagonist Sutton was just 0.034 off pole heading the second row of the grid.
Making it four title rivals in the top four was 2019 runner-up Dan Cammish, who survived two major offs at Clearways – clipping the barriers on the exit of the corner during the first one – but both times crucially managing to keep the car going and get back to the pit lane.
Second of the Motorbase Fords was Ollie Jackson, who enjoyed a strong showing in fifth position following his podium at the Brands Hatch GP circuit earlier this year, while Hill’s Honda will line up sixth after having his best time removed for causing the third red flag of the session after beaching the FK2 Honda Civic in the gravel at Paddock Hill Bend.
Triple champion Matt Neal was another driver who had an eventful session with multiple off-track excursions which he survived to manage seventh ahead of standings leader Colin Turkington who was unable to take advantage of the improving conditions late in the session and could only manage eighth.
While the result itself may disappoint the four-time champion, some consolation was provided in that the position was good enough for him to win the Goodyear Wingfoot Award for gaining the most points in qualifying across the season.
In only his second BTCC event, Paul Rivett enjoyed a fantastic result in ninth position in the Trade Price Cars Audi S3, ahead of BTC Racing’s Josh Cook who rounded out the top ten runners.
Team Parker Racing’s Stephen Jelley managed 11th position ahead of the newer BMW 330i M Sport of Tom Oliphant in 12th, while Aiden Moffat, Jack Goff and Chris Smiley completed the top 15.
The opening race of the season finale for the 2020 British Touring Car Championship at Brands Hatch is scheduled to get underway at 10:00 BST tomorrow.
|1||80||M||Tom INGRAM||Toyota Gazoo Racing UK with Ginsters||Toyota Corolla||25||54.950||0.000|
|2||6||I||Rory BUTCHER||Motorbase Performance||Ford Focus ST||25||54.974||0.024|
|3||116||I||Ashley SUTTON||Laser Tools Racing||Infiniti Q50||27||54.984||0.034|
|4||27||M||Dan CAMMISH||Halfords Yuasa Racing||Honda Civic Type-R||25||55.033||0.083|
|5||48||I||Ollie JACKSON||Motorbase Performance||Ford Focus ST||29||55.139||0.189|
|6||24||I||Jake HILL||MB Motorsport accelerated by Blue Square||Honda Civic Type-R||19||55.256||0.306|
|7||25||M||Matt NEAL||Halfords Yuasa Racing||Honda Civic Type-R||23||55.279||0.329|
|8||1||M||Colin TURKINGTON||Team BMW||BMW 330i M Sport||24||55.381||0.431|
|9||222||I||Paul RIVETT||GKR TradePriceCars.com||Audi S3||25||55.404||0.454|
|10||66||I||Josh COOK||BTC Racing||Honda Civic Type-R||28||55.449||0.499|
|11||12||I||Stephen JELLEY||Team Parker Racing||BMW 125i M Sport||27||55.481||0.531|
|12||15||M||Tom OLIPHANT||Team BMW||BMW 330i M Sport||27||55.484||0.534|
|13||16||I||Aiden MOFFAT||Laser Tools Racing||Infiniti Q50||27||55.527||0.577|
|14||31||I||Jack GOFF||RCIB Insurance Racing with Fox Transport||Volkswagen CC||22||55.722||0.772|
|15||22||I||Chris SMILEY||Excelr8 Motorsport||Hyundai i30 Fastback N||25||55.769||0.819|
|16||3||I||Tom CHILTON||BTC Racing||Honda Civic Type-R||27||55.799||0.849|
|17||32||I||Adam MORGAN||Carlube Triple R Racing with Mac Tools||Mercedes-Benz A-Class||24||55.866||0.916|
|18||41||I||Carl BOARDLEY||Team HARD.||BMW 125i M Sport||26||55.867||0.917|
|19||28||I||Nicolas HAMILTON||ROKiT Racing with Team HARD.||Volkswagen CC||27||55.985||1.035|
|20||44||I||Andy NEATE||Motorbase Performance||Ford Focus ST||25||56.075||1.125|
|21||4||I||Sam OSBORNE||MB Motorsport accelerated by Blue Square||Honda Civic Type-R||27||56.154||1.204|
|22||777||I||Michael CREES||The Clever Baggers with BTC Racing||Honda Civic Type-R||27||56.313||1.363|
|23||23||I||Ethan HAMMERTON||GKR TradePriceCars.com||Audi S3||27||56.328||1.378|
|24||88||I||Glynn GEDDIE||RCIB Insurance Racing with Fox Transport||Volkswagen CC||25||56.490||1.540|
|25||49||I||Brad PHILPOT||Power Maxed Car Care Racing||Vauxhall Astra||29||56.516||1.566|
|26||32||I||Jack BUTEL||Carlube Triple R Racing with Mac Tools||Mercedes-Benz A-Class||25||57.395||2.445|
|27||18||I||Senna PROCTOR||Excelr8 Motorsport||Hyundai i30 Fastback N||3||57.446||2.496|