Hand sets pace in Donington test

Team Pyro’s Ash Hand bounced back from morning problems to head Renault UK Clio Cup testing at Donington Park with what is believed to be the championship’s fastest ever lap around the Leicestershire circuit.
  • Ash Hand Donington test

As temperatures soared Hand, BMR Restart-backed team-mate Ashley Sutton, points leader Ant Whorton-Eales (SV Racing), Brett Smith (Pyro), Jordan Stilp (20Ten Racing) and Jack Mitchell (SVR) all got beneath Josh Cook’s 2014 qualifying lap record of 1m17.358s.

Hand and Sutton traded fastest times for four laps in succession until Hand set an unbeatable 1m16.622s with Sutton just 0.017s adrift on 1m16.639s.

It was great form from Hand whose car had stopped part-way through the earlier morning session with a mechanical gremlin.

Notably Whorton-Eales, who topped the morning session, was unable to complete what could have been his quickest time of the day having just set the fastest first sector of anyone…

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Team BKR’s Freddie Hunt was seventh ahead of WDE's Paul Rivett who was left fuming after an on-track clash with Pyro’s Smith in the afternoon that meant both had to rely on their times set in the earlier first session.

Ninth and tenth fastest for the JamSport Racing and Team Cooksport squads respectively were Dan Holland and Charles Ladell. Holland’s form in a newly-built car (see separate story) was particularly noteworthy…

Just one second covered the four Masters Cup runners with 20Ten’s Mark Howard fastest of them in 14th ahead of class leader Paul Knapp (Cooksport), Ben Seyfried (SVR) and Graham Field (20Ten).

Meanwhile university studies prevented WDE’s Rory Green from taking part in today’s test.