Tom Ingram was once again in front for the second practice session of the day for the first rounds of the 2017 BTCC at Brands Hatch. But behind him the order was totally shuffled from the first session.
The times were even closer with the top 29 separated by fractionally over a second and the entire field was just over two seconds off (newcomer Josh Price being the only car with a gap over two seconds.)
Adam Morgan was Ingram’s closest rival this time just 0.086 seconds off in the Ciceley Mercedes. Next up was a very rapid Jack Goff taking third in the Eurotech Honda Civic ahead of Matt Neal in the works version. Goffs team mate (and boss!) Jeff Smith also had a great session to take seventh in his Civic.
Rob Austin was fifth in the Handy Motorsport Toyota with Colin Turkington the best BMW in sixth. Aron Taylor Smith put the MG6 into eighth ahead of the Vauxhall of Senna Proctor. Proctor becomes the first Vauxhall driver to put a car into the top ten on their return with more experienced team mate Chilton this time in thirteenth.
Andrew Jordan completed the top ten in the Pirtek BMW just ahead of Aiden Moffat, going much better than he had in the first session.
Reigning champion Shedden was twelfth, likely working on race setup. Mike Epps was the only Team Hard car in the top half of the field in fourteenth just ahead of Rob Collard in fifteenth. The last place in the top half of the field was taken by Daniel Lloyd in the second of the MGs.
Tom Ingram joked that he may be making things harder for himself by raising expectations;
“I’m piling the pressure on myself here, aren’t I!” said Ingram. “We spent a lot of that session playing around with the balance of the car and we are still a couple of tenths away from our pole-setting pace last year, so there is a fairly big chunk to come – we’ve by no means given everything we’ve got. I’m sure some people will have been running with a fair bit of weight on-board in FP2, so it will be interesting to see where everybody else is in qualifying in terms of out-and-out pace.”
Morgan was comfortable with his pace, helped by new members of the team;
“We’ve have brought in a new engineer team during the off-season and they have done a magnificent job with the car,” commented Morgan. “It just feels so nice to drive and it’s always good to be up at the sharp end. A few people probably haven’t done a qualifying sim yet, but we’re working on our own strategy and we’re happy where we are.
“It’s busy out there and getting a clean lap will be critical – fingers crossed we’ll be in the right place at the right time come qualifying.”
2017 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship – Free Practice Two – Brands Hatch (Indy):
1 Tom INGRAM (GBR) Speedworks Motorsport 48.158s (90.29 mph)
2 Adam MORGAN (GBR) Ciceley Motorsport +0.086s
3 Jack GOFF (GBR) Eurotech Racing +0.091s
4 Matt NEAL (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +0.165s
5 Rob AUSTIN (GBR) Handy Motorsport +0.260s
6 Colin TURKINGTON (GBR) Team BMW +0.301s
7 Jeff SMITH (GBR) Eurotech Racing +0.341s
8 Aron TAYLOR-SMITH (GBR) MG Racing RCIB Insurance +0.354s
9 Senna PROCTOR (GBR) Power Maxed Racing +0.366s
10 Andrew JORDAN (GBR) BMW Pirtek Racing +0.373s
11 Aiden MOFFAT (GBR) Laser Tools Racing +0.382s
12 Gordon SHEDDEN (GBR) Halfords Yuasa Racing +0.401s
13 Tom CHILTON (GBR) Power Maxed Racing +0.411s
14 Michael EPPS (GBR) Autoaid/RCIB Insurance Racing +0.434s
15 Rob COLLARD (GBR) Team BMW +0.436s
16 Daniel LLOYD (GBR) MG Racing RCIB Insurance +0.508s
17 Mat JACKSON (GBR) Team Shredded Wheat with Duo +0.529s
18 Dave NEWSHAM (IRL) BTC Norlin Racing +0.564s
19 Matt SIMPSON (GBR) Simpson Racing +0.592s
20 Jake HILL (GBR) TAG Racing +0.594s
21 Josh COOK (GBR) Team Parker with Maximum Motorsport +0.690s
22 Will BURNS (GBR) Autoaid/RCIB Insurance Racing +0.718s
23 Chris SMILEY (GBR) BTC Norlin Racing +0.724s
24 Stephen JELLEY (GBR) Team Parker with Maximum Motorsport +0.739s
25 Luke DAVENPORT (GBR) Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Duo +0.819s
26 Ant WHORTON-EALES (GBR) AmDtuning.com with Cobra Exhausts +0.847s
27 Martin DEPPER (GBR) Team Shredded Wheat Racing with Duo +0.868s
28 Ashley SUTTON (GBR) Adrian Flux Subaru Racing +0.888s
29 James COLE (GBR) Adrian Flux Subaru Racing +1.072s
30 Ollie JACKSON (GBR) AmDtuning.com with Cobra Exhausts +1.097s
31 Jason PLATO (GBR) Adrian Flux Subaru Racing +1.290s
32 Josh PRICE (GBR) Adrian Flux Subaru Racing +2.277s
By Marc Waller