Tom Ingram on top at Brands Hatch
Speedworks Motorsport’s Tom Ingram has topped the times in the opening Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship Free Practice session of the new season at Brands Hatch.
The Toyota hotshot won the opening rounds of the previous two seasons around the 1.2-mile circuit and it’s clear both Ingram and the Avensis are well suited to the Kent circuit.
“It always just seems to go really well for us here,” said Ingram. “We’ve been right on it for three or four years in a row now. We weren’t really looking for qualifying performance. We just wanted to see where the car was at.
“It feels really good and we know we’ve got more to come yet. People don’t realise being down the sharp end of the pit-lane gets you an extra lap in qualifying – it makes a big difference.”
It was little surprise to see the WIX Racing with Eurotech Honda of Jack Goff following behind in second, as he has also shown good form here in previous years. Goff has enjoyed an extremely solid pre-season too, and he is now considered by many to be a genuine title contender in the BTCC.
Tom Chilton and Matt Simpson starred in third and fourth respectively, as the Motorbase-run Ford and Simpson Racing Honda also showed their calibre around the tight and twisty track.
Sam Tordoff slipped back into BTCC action with consummate ease as the Yorkshireman claimed a top five finish in FP1, whilst Halfords Yuasa Racing’s debutant, Dan Cammish, completed the top six order.
Rory Butcher’s MG was one of the pace-setters early on but the AmD man eventually had to settle for seventh, ahead of Josh Cook in the Power Maxed TAG Racing Vauxhall.
Surprisingly the first BMW home was Colin Turkington down in ninth, with Ciceley Motorsport’s Adam Morgan rounding out the top ten.
2018 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship – Free Practice 1 – Brands Hatch Indy
1 Tom INGRAM (GBR) Speedworks Motorsport 48.384s
2 Jack GOFF (GBR) WIX Racing with Eurotech +0.056s
3 Tom CHILTON (GBR) Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Gallagher +0.057s
4 Matt SIMPSON (GBR) Simpson Racing +0.136s
5 Sam TORDOFF (GBR) Team GardX Racing with Motorbase +0.148s
6 Dan CAMMISH (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +0.150s
7 Rory BUTCHER (GBR) AmD with AutoAid/RCIB Insurance Racing +0.177s
8 Josh COOK (GBR) Power Maxed TAG Racing +0.224s
9 Colin TURKINGTON (GBR) Team BMW +0.264s
10 Adam MORGAN (GBR) Mac Tools with Ciceley Motorsport +0.273s
11 Mike BUSHELL (GBR) Trade Price Cars with Brisky Racing +0.276s
12 James COLE (GBR) Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Gallagher +0.279s
13 Ashley SUTTON (GBR) Adrian Flux Subaru Racing +0.284s
14 Aiden MOFFAT (GBR) Laser Tools Racing +0.285s
15 Tom OLIPHANT (GBR) Ciceley Motorsport +0.373s
16 Matt NEAL (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +0.385s
17 Stephen JELLEY (GBR) Team Parker Racing +0.415s
18 Brett SMITH (GBR) WIX Racing with Eurotech +0.421s
19 Andrew JORDAN (GBR) BMW Pirtek Racing +0.468s
20 Jake HILL (GBR) Trade Price Cars with Brisky Racing +0.471s
21 Rob AUSTIN (GBR) DUO Motorsport with HMS Racing +0.486s
22 Senna PROCTOR (GBR) Power Maxed TAG Racing +0.508s
23 Rob COLLARD (GBR) Team BMW +0.632s
24 Ollie JACKSON (GBR) AmD with Cobra Exhausts +0.704s
25 Tom BOARDMAN (GBR) AmD with AutoAid/RCIB Insurance Racing +0.843s
26 Jason PLATO (GBR) Adrian Flux Subaru Racing +0.845s
27 Bobby THOMPSON (GBR) Team HARD with Trade Price Cars +0.869s
28 James NASH (GBR) BTC Norlin Racing +0.912s
29 Michael CAINE (GBR) Team HARD with Trade Price Cars +0.934s
30 Josh PRICE (GBR) Autoglym Academy Racing +0.939s
31 Sam SMELT (GBR) AmD with Cobra Exhausts +1.477s
32 Chris SMILEY (GBR) BTC Norlin Racing NO TIME