Jack Goff takes pole in first qualifying session
WIX Racing with Eurotech has enjoyed a stellar qualifying session for Round 16 of the 2018 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship with Jack Goff taking pole position at Snetterton, whilst team-mate Brett Smith claimed fourth.
Goff set the pace during the recent two-day test at the 2.99-mile circuit and again topped the times during FP2 earlier today. The multiple BTCC race winner went even better in qualifying however, as he broke Gordon Shedden’s 2016 qualifying lap record with a 1:55.556s effort.
Matt Simpson – also part of the Eurotech stable – completed the celebrations by taking third, behind Halfords Yuasa Racing rookie Dan Cammish.
Toyota star Tom Ingram was the first non-Honda on the timesheets as the title contender came home fifth ahead of Power Maxed TAG Racing’s Josh Cook. Bath racer Cook bounced back from a difficult start to the day, when unfortunate contact with Vauxhall team-mate Senna Proctor forced him out of the opening practice session.
Rob Austin – sporting a red roof in homage to Alfa Romeo’s glittering past in the BTCC – has quietly gone about his business throughout the day, and eventually proved the ever-growing potential of the DUO Motorsport with HMS Racing Alfa by claiming seventh. The team has been working tirelessly on finding the right balance in the all-new Giulietta, with blistering pace often bringing about a difficult handling machine, but the squad continue to move closer towards the ultimate setup.
Sam Tordoff – despite running his Ford Focus RS in a striking pink livery for the #BTCC60 weekend – had ran under the radar during practice but he hooked things up during qualifying and will line-up on the fourth row of the grid for tomorrow’s opener. Reigning champion Ash Sutton will start the race ninth for Adrian Flux Subaru Racing, whilst Tom Oliphant rounded out the top ten in the Ciceley Motorsport Mercedes.
A number of BTCC’s big-hitters failed to make the top ten, most notably Andrew Jordan (11th), Matt Neal (12th), Adam Morgan (13th), Colin Turkington (15th), Tom Chilton (16th), Rob Collard (17th) and Jason Plato (25th).
The Motorbase performance squad deserve special praise for even getting Chilton into the action, however, as the Kent team produced a herculean effort to complete an engine change in his Shredded Wheat Racing with Gallagher Ford in time for him to join the action midway through the 30-minute session.
In what is an unprecedented Saturday for the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship, there will be another qualifying session later today. All 31-cars will take part in a 15-minute shootout that will determine for tomorrow’s historic ‘Diamond Double’ 60-mile, which will see all drivers competing for double points in the final encounter. The first two races will take the usual format.
Jack Goff said: “We made a 50/50 call on something on the car and we managed to make it worse than it was in Free Practice 2, so there may be more time left in it. It’s lovely to be back in first and all three of our cars are in the top five. The boys and girls have done a massive job to turn the cars around since Croft. I missed the record last year by 0.005 seconds and it’s about making sure you get it all right, and we did that this year. We’ve got a better car still to come underneath us but we didn’t leave anything out there – I gave it everything. We’ve got a point there already, so we’re winning this weekend so far!”
2018 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship – Qualifying 1 – Snetterton
1 Jack GOFF (GBR) WIX Racing with Eurotech 1m55.556s (92.49mph)
2 Dan CAMMISH (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +0.074s
3 Matt SIMPSON (GBR) Simpson Racing +0.170s
4 Brett SMITH (GBR) WIX Racing with Eurotech +0.221s
5 Tom INGRAM (GBR) Speedworks Motorsport +0.378s
6 Josh COOK (GBR) Power Maxed TAG Racing +0.499s
7 Rob AUSTIN (GBR) DUO Motorsport with HMS Racing +0.540s
8 Sam TORDOFF (GBR) Team GardX Racing with Motorbase +0.593s
9 Ashley SUTTON (GBR) Adrian Flux Subaru Racing +0.640s
10 Tom OLIPHANT (GBR) Ciceley Motorsport +0.646s
11 Andrew JORDAN (GBR) BMW Pirtek Racing +0.682s
12 Matt NEAL (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +0.763s
13 Adam MORGAN (GBR) Mac Tools with Ciceley Motorsport +0.851s
14 Mike BUSHELL (GBR) Trade Price Cars with Brisky Racing +0.869s
15 Colin TURKINGTON (GBR) Team BMW +0.873s
16 Tom CHILTON (GBR) Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Gallagher +0.960s
17 Rob COLLARD (GBR) Team BMW +1.038s
18 Rory BUTCHER (GBR) AmD with AutoAid/RCIB Insurance Racing +1.096s
19 Senna PROCTOR (GBR) Power Maxed TAG Racing +1.129s
20 Bobby THOMPSON (GBR) Team HARD with Trade Price Cars +1.140s
21 Chris SMILEY (GBR) BTC Norlin Racing +1.243s
22 Ollie JACKSON (GBR) AmD with Cobra Exhausts +1.284s
23 Dan LLOYD (GBR) BTC Norlin Racing +1.386s
24 James COLE (GBR) Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Gallagher +1.386s
25 Jason PLATO (GBR) Adrian Flux Subaru Racing +1.455s
26 Aiden MOFFAT (GBR) Laser Tools Racing +1.489s
27 Michael CAINE (GBR) Team HARD with Trade Price Cars +1.847s
28 Stephen JELLEY (GBR) Team Parker Racing +1.989s
29 Sam SMELT (GBR) AmD with Cobra Exhausts +1.995s
30 Ant WHORTON-EALES (GBR) AmD with AutoAid/RCIB Insurance Racing +2.038s
31 Dan WELCH (GBR) Trade Price Cars with Brisky Racing +2.219s