As expected, the weather at the Knockhill qualifying session provided an exciting qualifying session. What started as a wet session, ended in a sprint to be the last car to cross the line at the end of qualifying.
The track conditions improved as the session progressed, with much of the grid switching to the Dunlop SportMaxx slicks with ten minutes remaining.
Dave Newsham achieved his best qualifying result of the season at Knockhill, crossing the line with a fastest lap of 53.47.
“It was a great day for us today, in very mixed conditions. P8 is our best qualifying result of the year, we are used to racing in the top ten, so starting from there can only make things easier. I’m looking forward to getting stuck in tomorrow, and see if we can push BTC Norlin Racing towards the podium.”
The trend of setting fastest laps on the final completed continued across the grid of 32 cars, with two thirds of the drivers doing the same.
Also changing to the slick tyre after the red flag period, the ever-drying track also meant that Chris Smiley completed his fastest lap time during his final lap.
Qualifying in 24th with a time of 54.284, having struggled to find space on the 1.3 mile track, Chris was disappointed with the result, but was keen to get focused on the job for tomorrow.
“I am really annoyed that I didn’t get to hook together the qualifying lap that I know the car and I can do around this circuit. It is a real pain, but tomorrow is another day and I am already focused on the races ahead.”
Team Manager Bert Taylor was delighted with Saturday’s performance.
“I am so excited by what we achieved yesterday, both cars have shown that they have top 15 pace, and Dave getting 8th on the grid for the first race of the weekend, is our best qualifying result this year.
“We have all worked so hard this year, and this has given us a real boost. It is going to be a busy few races, and I would love to see both cars making great progress in all of the races.”
Race 1 gets underway at 11:50 and will be live on ITV 4 from 11:00.
Photography: Jay Adair.