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Qualifying report
BTCC Thruxton

BTCC Thruxton: Ingram grabs pole with Cammish second

Tom Ingram grabbed his second British Touring Car Championship pole position of the season on the series’ fastest track, Thruxton.

Pole sitter Tom Ingram

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A significant increase in ambient and track temperatures plus changes in wind direction played havoc with the teams’ calculations and Ingram, in his Excelr8 Motorsport Hyundai i30 N Fastback, mastered the curveballs the best.

Despite being allowed just five seconds of hybrid usage per lap due to his equal-third position in the championship, 2022 title winner Ingram sailed through his opening qualifying set with the second-fastest time behind Dan Cammish.

Ingram was second again in the following phase of qualifying, as Dan Rowbottom, Cammish’s team-mate in the Alliance Racing-run NAPA Ford Focus ST stable, moved to the fore.

In the Quick Six shootout, it was Ingram in front as he headed Cammish by 0.265 seconds to grab pole.

“The car felt fantastic today,” Ingram related. “I felt confident coming into the weekend, and the car felt alive from the get-go.

“We’ve made tiny, minute tweaks to it, and we’re getting results back from it. I cannot say enough good things about how it felt.”

Cammish, allowed 11s of hybrid per lap, for his part was delighted to get on the front row. He has been feeling ill since midweek and struggled through the free practice sessions.

Jake Hill, who set the overall fastest time in free practice, was on 5s of hybrid in his Laser Tools-liveried West Surrey Racing BMW 330e M Sport, which he was happy to put into third place on the grid despite a big lock-up at the chicane on his hot lap.

Photo by: JEP

While Hill was just 0.024s adrift of Cammish, Rowbottom was in turn just 0.010s further back.

The Midlander looked in prime shape for a pole attack, on the full 15s of hybrid, after going fastest in each of the opening two phases of qualifying.

A big slide at Church Corner on his quick lap in Q3 almost certainly cost Rowbottom a place on the front row, but likely made no difference to Ingram being on pole.

Championship leader Ash Sutton made it three Alliance Fords in the top five, after only just squeaking through the first two qualifying segments on 1s of hybrid.

A miscommunication with his engineer in Q1, during which the track was much slower than in free practice, meant Sutton pitted for attention to the Focus.

He got out on new front tyres to put in a last-gasp effort that knocked Rob Huff out of the qualifying equation, and his Q2 time only just got him through too.

But Sutton knuckled down in the Quick Six, finishing within 0.2s of the front row and comfortably clear of the final driver in the shootout, Tom Chilton with his Excelr8 Hyundai.

Adam Morgan fell just 0.009s short of Sutton on a last-lap flier in Q2 to be the fastest driver not to make it into the final phase, and his WSR BMW will line up on the fourth row with the leading Speedworks Motorsport Toyota Corolla GR Sport of Josh Cook.

Jake Hill

Jake Hill

Photo by: JEP



Andrew Watson (Speedworks Toyota) and Colin Turkington (WSR BMW) make it an all-Northern Irish fifth row, with Turkington struggling with a lively balance and just 3s of hybrid.

The Power Maxed Racing Vauxhall Astras of Mikey Doble and Aron Taylor-Smith brought up the rear in Q2 – unsurprising in the case of Taylor-Smith, who had a lurid spin at Noble in Q1, smashed into the tyre wall at Goodwood, crabbed it back to the pits, and sat while the PMR crew did a remarkable job of fixing the car sufficiently to get him out for two flying laps.

BTCC Thruxton - Qualifying results

   
1
 - 
3
   
Cla Driver # Car Laps Time Interval km/h
1 United Kingdom T. Ingram Team Bristol Street Motors 100 Hyundai i30 Fastback N Performance 6

1'15.379

  112.519
2 United Kingdom D. Cammish NAPA Racing UK 27 Ford Focus ST 6

+0.265

1'15.644

0.265 112.125
3 United Kingdom J. Hill Laser Tools Racing with MB Motorsport 24 BMW 330e M Sport 6

+0.289

1'15.668

0.024 112.090
4 United Kingdom D. Rowbottom NAPA Racing UK 32 Ford Focus ST 7

+0.299

1'15.678

0.010 112.075
5 United Kingdom A. Sutton NAPA Racing UK 1 Ford Focus ST 7

+0.443

1'15.822

0.144 111.862
6 United Kingdom T. Chilton Team Bristol Street Motors 3 Hyundai i30 Fastback N Performance 6

+0.760

1'16.139

0.317 111.396

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