Ingram lays down a marker in FP2
Speedworks Motorsport’s Tom Ingram set the fastest time of the weekend in FP2 at Thruxton, ending the session more than half a second quicker than his nearest rival.
Ingram, who took a maiden pole position at the Brands Hatch season opener, arrives in Hampshire without success ballast and his form so far suggests he’ll be a main contender in qualifying this afternoon.
The Toyota driver’s lap time of 1:16.542 is within four tenths of the qualifying lap record and more than half a second faster than the rest of the pack. Andrew Jordan followed up his own pace-setting performance in FP1 with second place here, whilst Aiden Moffat starred with a late flying run to take third for Laser Tools Racing.
Jack Goff continues to impress, having switched to rear-wheel drive machinery for 2016, and the Team IHG Rewards Club driver was again the highest placed BMW in fourth.
MG have experienced a mixed morning so far with the pace of the MG6 not in doubt. Rookie Ashley Sutton ended up fifth, but could only complete nine laps after what he called ‘returning gremlins’ thwarted his attack. Team-mate Josh Cook could only manage 19th.
WIX Racing produced a stunning effort to ready Adam Morgan’s Mercedes A-Class in time for the second session, following a high speed shunt earlier today, and the Lancastrian repaid his squad with a top six finish.
Aron Smith continues to fly the flag for the new BKR team with the VW CC always performing well at Thruxton. The Irishman was seventh ahead of an impressive run for Rob Austin, who was eighth for Handy Motorsport. Fans’ favourite Austin is himself acclimatising to the FWD Toyota, having previously spent his entire BTCC career in a RWD Audi prior to this campaign.
Jeff Smith and Mat Jackson rounded out the top ten for Eurotech and Motorbase respectively, whilst Hunter Abbott enjoyed an encouraging run in 11th.
A trio of multiple champions were left stranded well down the order in 18th, 20th and 21st, with Gordon Shedden and Matt Neal getting to grips with the ballast-laden Honda Civic Type R around the UK’s fastest track while Jason Plato continues to develop the new Subaru Levorg.
The all-important qualifying session for Round 10 of the 2016 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship will take place at 16:10, with all the action being screened live and exclusively via www.itv.com/btcc.
2016 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship – Free Practice 2 – Thruxton:
1 Tom INGRAM (GBR) Speedworks Motorsport 1m16.542s
2 Andrew JORDAN (GBR) Motorbase Performance +0.503s
3 Aiden MOFFAT (GBR) Laser Tools Racing +0.600s
4 Jack GOFF (GBR) Team IHG Rewards Club +0.625s
5 Ashley SUTTON (GBR) MG Racing RCIB Insurance +0.643s
6 Adam MORGAN (GBR) WIX Racing +0.987s
7 Aron SMITH (IRL) BKR +1.084s
8 Rob AUSTIN (GBR) Handy Motorsport +1.256s
9 Jeff SMITH (GBR) Eurotech Racing +1.292s
10 Mat JACKSON (GBR) Motorbase Performance +1.315s
11 Hunter ABBOTT (GBR) Power Maxed Racing +1.347s
12 Daniel LLOYD (GBR) Eurotech Racing +1.414s
13 Colin TURKINGTON (GBR) Silverline Subaru BMR Racing +1.520s
14 Sam TORDOFF (GBR) Team JCT600 Racing with GardX +1.579s
15 Daniel WELCH (GBR) Goodstone Racing +1.622s
16 Robert COLLARD (GBR) Team JCT600 Racing with GardX +1.625s
17 Martin DEPPER (GBR) Eurotech Racing +1.687s
18 Gordon SHEDDEN (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +1.690s
19 Josh COOK (GBR) MG Racing RCIB Insurance +1.732s
20 Matt NEAL (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +1.810s
21 Jason PLATO (GBR) Silverline Subaru BMR Racing +2.059s
22 Jake HILL (GBR) RCIB Insurance Racing +2.113s
23 Kelvin FLETCHER (GBR) Power Maxed Racing +2.209s
24 Matt SIMPSON (GBR) Speedworks Motorsport +2.322s
25 Warren SCOTT (GBR) Silverline Subaru BMR Racing +2.405s
26 Alex MARTIN (GBR) Dextra Racing +2.610s
27 Ollie JACKSON (GBR) AmD Tuning.com+2.912s
28 James COLE (GBR) Silverline Subaru BMR Racing +3.176s
29 Chris SMILEY (GBR) TLC/RCIB Insurance Racing +3.212s
30 Stewart LINES (GBR) Maximum Motorsport +3.906s
31 Mark HOWARD (GBR) BKR +4.271s
32 Michael EPPS (GBR) RCIB Insurance Racing +5.703s