Ashley Sutton was also on pole in 2016 with MG
(Photo from: www.btcc.net)
Ashley Sutton claimed his second pole in as many years at Donington Park with a pole lap record time in his Subaru Levorg GT. The 23-year-old record a time of 1:09.412, one tenth of a second quicker than his nearest challenger, and FP1 pace setter Rob Austin. Sutton’s pole was made even more impressive as he was sixth tenths of a second quicker than any of his teammates including hugely experienced and double BTCC champion Jason Plato.
The session started quickly with times continuously getting faster and faster with multiple drivers taking provisional pole however on 22 minutes, and only eight minutes into the session, Sutton made his mover and posted a time three tenths of a second faster than then pole sitter Matt Neal. This time would never be beaten however below, times constantly changed.
The session effectively came to a stop at half distance with 15 minutes to go as drivers switched tyres around and warmed up new ones. The biggest move came from Tom Ingram who, with 66Kg of success ballast on board posted a time quick enough for third. However while trying for a faster time a lap later he found himself in the gravel on the exit of Copise after losing the rear of his car. Fortunately he was able to continue.
Three minutes later and there was a red flag though as drivers start flying off the circuit at The Old Hairpin. It was found out to be Colin Turkington who suffered an engine component failure which dropped water on the circuit ensuring he would take no further part in the session. At the time of the Red flag the order was Sutton followed by Goff, Ingram, Hill, Neal, Shedden, Epps, Austin, Moffat and Turkington rounding out the top 10.
A few minutes later and the green flags were waving with a very limited amount of time to set a lap time. There was enough time however for some drivers to improves such as Adam Morgan who climbed to tenth and Rob Austin who posted an impressive time to finish the session second. Aidan Moffat also improved to fifth which meant the final standings were Ashely Sutton in first with Rob Austin joining him on the front row. Jack Goff and Tom Ingram third and fourth with Aidan Moffat, Jake Hill, Matt Neal, Gordon Shedden, Mike Epps and Adam Morgan rounding out the top 10.