Onwards and upwards for Hill
Trade Price Cars Racing’s Jake Hill had a frustrating weekend in the Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship at Croft; after taking a season’s-best qualifying of ninth, and points in race one, engine issues forced retirement from race two, resulting in Hill not being able to start the final race of the day.
“The car was really good, as always we felt there was a little more to come – 0.1 second would have put me in the top-six – but we really are making great progress with the car,” said Hill after qualifying ninth overall on Saturday.
Rain just before the opening race meant there was a little uncertainty as to which tyres to choose, and with Hill starting on the harder ‘option’ tyres, the early laps saw several drivers able to edge past.
Following an appearance from the Safety Car, Hill found himself in a fierce battle with Ingram, Neal and Jelley – with Ingram like Hill on the harder tyres. Ultimately Neal nipped by both, with Jelley finishing narrowly behind Hill, who crossed the line 12th.
“Until the Safety Car we were strong, but the tyres dropped off later on, so to get some more points in the circumstances was really pleasing. Great job by the team as always.”
Race two saw a dramatic opening lap, with Hill being pushed off track and dropping to 16th, but as the tyres came on strong some brave moves from the 25-year-old saw Hill move up to 13th.
However, a brief ‘off’ on lap one damaged the radiator and on lap three the Trade Price Cars Racing Audi S3 ground to a halt.
As the team examined the car, it was apparent that the issue with the engine was not able to be addressed, forcing the team to withdraw the car from race three.
“The team have done a great job this weekend,” said Hill. “It was looking really good – the car was mega in race two – but it wasn’t to be … onwards to Oulton Park.”