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Solid qualifying for Hill
Solid qualifying for Hill

Jake Hill enjoyed a productive start to the second round of the 2023 Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship season, claiming third place in a rain-soaked qualifying session at Brands Hatch this afternoon.

The home favourite piloted his #24 WSR-run BMW 330e M Sport to set the quickest lap time in the initial qualifying session, before a dramatic ‘Top-10 Showdown’ saw pole position up for grabs. Ultimately, Jake claimed a P3 starting position, 0.277 seconds behind the pole-sitter.

A wet Brands Hatch circuit set the scene for the second round of the season as the new-look Laser Tools Racing with MB Motorsport team looked to build on a strong opening round at Donington Park a fortnight earlier.

The opening free practice session of the weekend saw Jake finish in the top spot on the time sheets as the gap between the leading pack looked as close-knit as ever, with the Kent-based driver eclipsing his fellow frontrunners right at the conclusion of the session. 

Consistency was the name of the game in the final practice session, which saw Jake finish as the fourth-quickest driver on the grid as the team prepared for the upcoming qualifying test, gaining valuable wet running data ahead of what looked to be a wet qualifying session.

The initial qualifying session saw Jake and the #24 team deliver a fantastic performance, claiming the top spot on the timesheets for the second time in the day with a 0.114-second gap to his nearest challenger. This ensured the Laser Tools Racing man safely made his way through to the final qualifying shootout.

In typical style, Jake delivered under pressure in the final shootout session. Initially, the Laser Tools Racing man topped the timesheets but the margins were fine. With just a couple of minutes remaining, Jake had slipped in the standings before an excellent final lap had looked to earn Jake a front-row start before the eventual polesitter delivered a fantastic lap right at the end.

Speaking after qualifying, Hill said: “The conditions have made today a real battle for all the drivers here at Brands Hatch. We were a bit in between conditions in the morning but as the day progressed, we knew we were in for a really wet one!

“The conditions for qualifying were a proper challenge but we’ve shown through both qualifying sessions that we are right in the mix at the front. Yet again, the WSR boys and girls have given me a great car and the Laser Beemer will be up for the challenge tomorrow!”

Images courtesy of https://psp-images.photoshelter.com