‘The best feeling ever’ was how 24-year-old Jake Hill described his maiden Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship podium, which also saw the Kent-based driver take victory in the Independents’ category in a battling drive in round two of the series at Brands Hatch earlier this month.
Along with eventual race-winner Senna Proctor, fellow podium debutant Ollie Jackson and a handful of others, a gamble on Dunlop SportMaxx dry tyres enabled Hill to charge through the pack on a drying track and contribute to one of the series most thrilling races in many years, filling him and his Trade Price Cars Brisky Racing squad with confidence for Donington Park.
“We had that amazing race two, but two very frustrating races either side which I’m sure could have given us more points but for other drivers’ mistakes, but that’s done now so on to Donington. Both Mike (Bushell) and I scored well at Brands so we’re well up in the Independent Teams’ and Drivers’ points. We both felt the car was strong when we ran at Donington for the Season Launch, plus Mike tested at Thruxton recently and was bang on the pace there too.”
Most importantly for Hill was the boost the results have given to the loyal group of partners that have made it possible for him to compete in the BTCC for the third consecutive season.
“It’s been tough getting things together, so to get that result – and the publicity it gained – this early in the season is huge for us. Tony (Gilham) and everyone at Team HARD have been so supportive in giving me the chance in BTCC and without them I wouldn’t be racing, and likewise the incredible folks at ROLEC, Trade Price Cars, Sportif Group, Danfoss, Ecoflam, Bill Rawles Classic Cars, AWS Appliance Spares, Scoria Tech and of course Brisky Racing.
“We have Dean from ROLEC, plus Mark from Ecoflam – fresh from finishing the London Marathon last week – and Richard from Brisky Racing along with John from Sportif and Dan from Trade Price Cars and Andy from AWS, they’re all coming to Donington and bringing guests along so let’s hope we can have another strong weekend for them to cheer.”
Hill was in the top three in both practice sessions and qualified sixth at Donington last year, before a rear-wing infringement relegated him to the back of the grid, so is determined to put it right this year.
“I love the circuit, I won here in Ginetta Juniors and Ginetta Supercup so it’s time I did the same in BTCC!”