Team Pyro’s Hand had topped the earlier morning session and was fastest again during the afternoon with an even better lap in one minute, 31.922 seconds – the only driver to dip under the 1m32s bracket.
That was more than three tenths of a second up on SV Racing’s championship leader Ant Whorton-Eales who was next up as less than a second covered the top eight outright, completed by Team Cooksport’s Charles Ladell.
Third was Hand’s BMR Restart-backed team-mate Ashley Sutton, while WDE Motorsport’s Paul Rivett, Pyro’s Brett Smith, 20Ten Racing’s Jordan Stilp and JamSport Racing’s Dan Holland.
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However the true form guide may have been slightly skewed as some drivers were forced to abort potentially better laps just as they had screwed themselves up for a final hot lap on new tyres. The reason for this was because the session needed to be halted so marshals could retrieve Jackson’s stricken Cooksport car which had landed nose first after going off the track exiting the high speed Chicane.
Hand said: “It’s working well for me and I still think there are a few more tenths I can wring from the car and tyres. Qualifying tomorrow will require massive concentration: it’s an abrasive circuit here meaning both pairs of new tyres we’re permitted on the front will only be good for one mega lap each – two at the most. Every driver will need to make those really count as there won’t be any opportunities after that…”