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Jake Hill ‘very happy’ after double podium at Donington

MB Motorsport’s Jake Hill was ‘very happy’ with his weekend in the British Touring Car Championship at Donington Park, which yielded a second, third and eighth.

Hill went into the meeting with a 50-point gap to the top of the championship table, and left it with a 62-point deficit, although the BMW racer remained third overall in the drivers’ championship standings.

The 29-year-old has made a name for himself as a consistent podium finisher – having scored 14 seconds alone since joining WSR at the beginning of 2022 – and he continued that trend on the Donington Park Grand Prix circuit.

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Hill edged closer to the pace throughout Saturday, eventually qualifying in sixth, just over half a second from pole – although he would start from ninth in the opening sprint due to a penalty carried over from Knockhill.

In a wet opening race, and thanks to overnight car changes, a confident Hill charged through the field in the closing stages, gaining a place per lap in the final laps.

Hill looked to have been beaten to second on the run to the line at the finish by Tom Ingram, but after the race the stewards switched the places after penalising Ingram for gaining an unfair advantage.

Beaten by a determined Ingram into the opening turn of race two, Hill lacked the pace to fight for the win and took third, keeping Ash Sutton honest in the closing laps.

From tenth on the grid for the reverse-grid final race, Hill gained two places to finish eighth, albeit like in race two he was behind both of his title rivals.

Despite the point gap growing, Hill was pleased with his weekend performance as the top BMW driver.

“Overall I’m very happy – it’s been a strong day and my engineer Craig [Porley] and the WSR and Laser Tools crew have done a great job to give me probably the best ‘wet car’ I’ve ever had,” said Hill.

“The BMW – which I was struggling with in the dry yesterday – was much better after some major changes overnight – and helped me get on the podium again.

“We’ve stayed ahead in the Manufacturers’ points too so I’m pleased to have done my bit.

“We now head to Silverstone and I have always enjoyed racing there in the past so let’s see what we can grab there.”

Jake Hill, MB Motorsport [WSR], BMW 330e M Sport NGTC and Tom Ingram, EXCELR8 Motorsport, Hyundai i30 N Fastback NGTC
Hill was beaten to the finish line in race one, but officials later penalised Ingram for edging Hill onto the grass. Photo: BTCC Media
Sporting Director Mark Blundell praised Hill’s driving at Donington, although he appeared to concede that second was now the target in the drivers’ championship, with Sutton being so far in front with only six races remaining.

“It was a weekend of ups and downs for us but a huge credit to Jake and the team for their efforts at Donington Park,” added Blundell.

“Saturday was a tough day for the team, with a new configuration, red flag interrupted practice sessions, and tricky conditions – it was difficult for the team to find the sweet spot.

“Jake did a great job to secure P6 in qualifying but with the penalty from Knockhill, Sunday was going to be a big challenge!

“I’m extremely proud of the work the team put in on the car to get it just right for Jake to do what he does best.

“Some fantastic race craft on Sunday rewarded Jake and the team with two trips to the podium and we now head to Silverstone still third in the standings and hunting down second.”

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