Bushell leaves it late to pip Pattison, Rivett in Friday testing at Oulton

Points leader Mike Bushell set the pace ahead of chief rivals Lee Pattison and Paul Rivett in Renault UK Clio Cup testing at Oulton Park today ahead of the championship’s two rounds at the Cheshire circuit this weekend.
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Team Pyro’s Bushell was fastest in both 45-minute sessions, although was twice given a black flag and ‘verbal warning’ by circuit officials for over-stepping the track limits mark.

In the end it was times set in the day’s second session that proved the quickest for all 19 drivers present.

For a while it looked as if it would be a WDE Motorsport 1-2 with Pattison (1m33.581s) and Rivett (1m33.863s) at the top of the timing screens. Bushell though eventually got between them and, on his very last lap, appeared to find something extra as he banged in a time of 1m33.365s to go fastest of all.

Bushell commented: “It’s been a very productive day but I had to put everything on the line to achieve that sort of time. But the Clio Cup car around here on the new Michelin tyre… wow! My new favourite car-circuit combination, without a doubt.”

As seen at earlier events, team-mates often circulated together to give one other a ‘tow’. This worked well not only for WDE (its other driver Dan Zelos was seventh) but also Westbourne Motorsport with its Thruxton winner James Dorlin and James Colburn (running under the PP Motorsport banner) in fourth and fifth positions.

Daniel Rowbottom was a fine sixth overall in his DRM-entered car ahead of Pyro’s Nathan Harrison and category returnee Shayne Deegan in his rebuilt SDR Motorsport machine. However Deegan ended his day with an off into the barriers at Druids…

Ciceley Motorsport’s Max Coates and Pyro’s Jack McCarthy were tenth and 11th, the last drivers to get within a second of pace-setter Bushell. And it was drivers from Ciceley and Pyro who were next up, too, namely Jade Edwards and Kyle Hornby.

JamSport’s Lucas Orrock and Ciceley pair Luke Reade and Sam Osborne filled places 14 to 16. Then came Orrock’s team-mate Aaron Thompson ahead of new WDE signing Nicolas Hamilton and JamSport’s third driver Graham Field.

CLICK HERE for full times plus speed trap figures and sector analysis from today's two test sessions.