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Jordan takes pole as mixed conditions make for a dramatic BTCC qualifying session at Thruxton

Andrew Jordan Andrew Jordan will start on pole for the first British Touring Car race at Thruxton this weekend after a dramatic qualifying.

The session started damp but with no rain, so there was a mix of slicks-wets, all-slicks, and all-wets tyre choices made by the teams and drivers. Although the wets-shod Honda of Matt Neal initially set the pace, it soon became clear that slick tyres were going to be needed for pole.

After Mat Jackson and Rob Collard both had provisional pole times disallowed for exceeding the track limits, Tom Onslow-Cole's WSR BMW moved to top spot on slicks.

As others switched to slicks the times kept falling, Jason Plato (works MG6) being the first driver under 1m19s and 1m18s, only to have his provisional pole effort of 1m17.741s taken away due to exceeding track limits. The order changed constantly as some drivers improved and others had times scrubbed.

Gordon Shedden went to the top of the times with a 1m16.894s lap just before Plato crashed at Church and brought out the red flags.

Before the restart, the timesheets were changed again, with Shedden losing all his times thanks to overboosting problems. That left the Eurotech Civic of Andrew Jordan on pole before the restart with a 1m17.389s.

Only Shedden looked likely to challenge Jordan's position, but an off at Allard and a red flag due to crashes by Andy Neate and Rob Austin curtailed his challenge.

Indeed, it was Jordan who managed to improve just before the final stoppage. His 1m16.983s left him 0.8s clear of Plato's effort, which became enough for the front row after Shedden's problems.

Frank Wrathall ended up third in his Dynojet Toyota Avensis, from Jackson and Dave Newsham's ES Racing Vauxhall Vectra.

Collard was one of the few frontrunners to improve late on to move into sixth, ahead of Aron Smith's Motorbase Ford and Lea Wood (Vectra).

Liam Griffin's fine effort meant the three Motorbase Fords were in the top nine. Onslow-Cole ended up 10th.

After his problems, Shedden was 18th, while Neal was only 20th thanks to crashing shortly after switching to slicks.

Pos  Driver           Team/Car           Time        Gap
 1.  Andrew Jordan    Eurotech Honda     1m16.983s
 2.  Jason Plato      Triple 8 MG        1m17.807s   + 0.824s
 3.  Frank Wrathall   Dynojet Toyota     1m18.002s   + 1.019s
 4.  Mat Jackson      Motorbase Ford     1m18.451s   + 1.468s
 5.  Dave Newsham     ES Vauxhall        1m18.578s   + 1.595s
 6.  Rob Collard      WSR BMW            1m18.626s   + 1.643s
 7.  Aron Smith       Motorbase Ford     1m18.871s   + 1.888s
 8.  Lea Wood         Wood Vauxhall      1m18.999s   + 2.016s
 9.  Liam Griffin     Motorbase Ford     1m19.151s   + 2.168s
10.  Tom Onslow-Cole  WSR BMW            1m19.227s   + 2.244s
11.  Nick Foster      WSR BMW            1m19.416s   + 2.433s
12.  Tony Gilham      Gilham Honda       1m19.625s   + 2.642s
13.  Ollie Jackson    AmD Volkswagen     1m19.628s   + 2.645s
14.  Adam Morgan      Speedworks Toyota  1m19.760s   + 2.777s
15.  Chris James      ES Vauxhall        1m20.870s   + 3.887s
16.  Andy Neate       Triple 8 MG        1m20.883s   + 3.900s
17.  Rob Austin       Austin Audi        1m20.904s   + 3.921s
18.  Gordon Shedden   Dynamics Honda     1m21.298s   + 4.315s
19.  Matt Neal        Dynamics Honda     1m22.152s   + 5.169s
20.  Tony Hughes      Speedworks Toyota  1m26.896s   + 9.913s
21.  Jeff Smith       Eurotech Honda     1m30.592s  + 13.609s
22.  Daniel Welch     Welch Proton

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